The Advantages of Using Payday Loans for Business or Individual Needs

If you have trouble with your financial terms on the business that you are holding now you better look up the latest and simplest way of getting loan that is through payday loans. This loan service has been most of people’s favorite loan service. This is due to the fact that such payday loan can always be counted on when individuals or companies are in urgent moment where they need immediate money to cope with all financial matters they are facing. The payday loan can provide quick responds to all those who are in search of fast money or cash within certain time. Beside the quick respond they also offer immediate process with easy loan approval that most people need while having such hard and difficult time with financial terms.

This service does not need any complicated procedures that makes people come back empty handed. All they need is to provide fixed job and bank account. They don’t need to show their credit history as the loan service does not need such credit history to approve the clients’ loan application. They will only see the number of income that the clients earn regularly to determine the type of loan that the clients can gain from the loan lenders. 

This definitely makes it easier for everyone to take the loan. They don’t have to stand in line like when they do in traditional loan. They can even do it via online and does not need to make other people to take notice that they are about to ask for loan. This keeps their privacy and definitely they can do it freely at anytime they want. However, it should be noticed that this fast money needs fast repayment as well. For those who want to apply for the loan should be well prepared with the obligation to pay and thus it is recommended that those with bad credit history should reconsider their willingness of getting such loan.

TIPS ON GOVERNMENT CONTRACTS

One of the more profitable choices that you can make for your business is to try to land a government contract. It can give you steady work for quite some time and the payments are regular. There are some things that you need to keep in mind, however, before going after any type of government work so that you can expect to be successful in landing the contract. What are some of those considerations that will help you and your business to move forward?

First of all, it is not generally enough for you to simply fill out the paperwork that is necessary and hope that you get the contract. You need to form a relationship with the individual that is looking at the paperwork and maintain that relationship. It is also very important that you are in compliance with any government regulatory agencies that may be monitoring your business. This can include ansi eia-748 and keeping track of your business with earned value management systems software. The last thing that you would want to have happen is to get the contract that you are after and then end up losing it because you are lacking in compliance. Finally, you should prepare yourself for all of the paperwork that is going to be necessary when doing any type of government work. The paperwork that you will have to do to get the contract is only the beginning, it will continue throughout the entire process. If you are able to get through the paperwork successfully, however, you will find that your business is moving forward as a result (Source: Earned Value Management by D. Gerard Consulting).

STARTING A BUSINESS ON A SHOESTRING BUDGET

One of the problems with opening a business is the fact that it often requires a considerable amount of startup costs. If you are trying to start a business on a shoestring budget or if you don’t have the credit necessary to get a business loan, what can you do to ensure that you have everything setup properly so that you can move your business forward? One of the things that you can do is to look for wholesale suppliers that are going to work with you on a one-on-one basis so that you can get the items that you need to sell at a lower price (Source: Wholesale Suppliers by Simple Source). You may also be able to use drop shipping wholesalers that will not only sell you those items a lower price, they will take care of your customers in the fact that they ship the items to them. Where can you find a drop ship supplier and what should you keep in mind when choosing one?

There are directories online that can help you to find a dropshipper that you can use for your business. Once you have found one that you want to use, establish a relationship with them and continue to work with them regularly. Those types of companies enjoy working with other businesses that give them regular customers. The fact that they are taking care of the shipping process and handling any returns will allow you to continue to work on your business and to develop your online presence regularly.

A VARIETY OF SURVEY OPTIONS

At one time, telephone surveys and those that were sent out by mail were the only type of surveys that were done. Of course, you may also do a questionnaire survey at your place of business and get information from your existing customers but there was really little that could be done to extend your reach. In today’s world, however, online survey software by Survey System is available that can make it much more convenient for you to get the information that you need to grow your business. What are some of the options that are available with the survey and how can you incorporate them into your business practices so that you benefit fully?

As far as the various options that are available, these are quite diverse. Each software system is going to have its own options, with some providing basic options to you and others being quite complicated. It’s a good idea for you to find a happy mixture so that you can put the surveys out easily and then perhaps combine them with the other type of surveys for a more complete picture of what needs to be done. It is also a good idea if the software that you are using will walk you through the process to a certain extent. This will make it much easier for you to ask the right questions and know what you should expect in response. Surveys are always going to be an important part of business as they have been for many years. Make sure that you use them as well and benefits fully.

Agricultural Business 101

Here are some common terms and phrases that are used in the agricultural business. 

Agricultural Accounting
Just like in any other industry, what farmers use for their accounting varies quite a bit. What some farmers don’t know is that there are specific aspects of agricultural accounting that, when used correctly, can help manage their farm better and help them become more profitable.

Production Analysis
This feature helps farmers understand their costs on a per unit basis for crops and livestock. Knowing your cost per unit gives you a better idea of how profitable you are, which can in turn affect each step you take.

Farm Information Tracking
Farmers need to gather and track information from different sources: by farm, field, landlord, and more. An agricultural accounting system should be able to help set up each of the sources to be tracked, and allow you to easily pull out the information you need by that source. This is not only useful for you, but also for providing information to those requesting it, such as managers, your bank, landlord, and more.

Book, Market, and Tax Asset Value Tracking
Knowing the true value of your assets can help you make better decisions. An agricultural accounting system can help you assess the book, market, and tax asset value of your assets for whatever reason you choose.

Transaction Distribution
When purchasing supplies in bulk, such as feed or fertilizer, it can be hard to distribute the costs for those items when it is used on multiple accounts or production units. Some agricultural accounting systems allow you to distribute the transactions to as many accounts or production units as you like, simply by setting them up ahead of time and then attributing income and expenses to them during data entry. This is extremely helpful in providing you a truly accurate financial picture for your farm.
There are so many ways farmers can improve and streamline their accounting by implementing agricultural accounting specifically, rather than just using a basic program without these features.

Starbucks Spirited PR Gamble

A Big Mac along with a glass of chardonnay? Who knows? That could be on the way. Starbucks is heading in that direction. The chain will soon be selling beer and wine in select locations. Four to six stores in the Southern California area will offer alcoholic beverages by the end of this year, as will some stores in Atlanta and Chicago

The chain began testing its new spirited approach in Seattle in 2010. Starbucks now offers beers for $5 and wines by the glass for $7 to $9 in five locations in that city and one in Portland, Oregon.

The questions are: what will this move do to the Starbucks brand? And how will customers have to change their habits in order for it to pay off? Currently the chain makes most of its daily sales by 2 p.m., which explains the foray into the spirit business. On the other hand around 75% of Starbucks customers are there for take out. That won't work in the beer and wine business. These customers will have to say and enjoy their beverages in-house. And what about the kids and teens that have made Starbucks one of their staples. Will mom and dad be happy sending their kids to a beer and wine establishment?

If this were Europe, there would be no issue. There families are used to going to pubs or cafes where coffee, food and spirits are sold. But, the U.S. isn't France or England and we generally have a different take on where liquor should and shouldn't be served. And what happens when a Starbucks barista has to 86 someone? What will be the protocol for that?

Starbucks has built an amazing worldwide brand. It has regularly changed its menu offering different types of drinks and food items, but a jump into the world of beer and wine is a big one. Adding a new pastry, sandwich or fruit drink does not risk compromising the chain's brand, but offering a happy hour where sprits flow freely will challenge the way many of its customers view the company.

Only time will tell if this gamble will pay off. Because it directly impacts their brand recognition, it could either turn out to be a PR miscue or a public relations homerun. Chances are it will land somewhere in the middle. Since they are only experimenting with a handful of stores, if the publicity effect is extremely negative, they can quickly shut the program down. But if the reaction is simply lukewarm, or only somewhat negative, they will most likely give the news stores a fair shot and launch a media relations campaign extolling the virtues of this new approach. If it works, it could become a one stop shop for buying one's stimulants in the morning and depressants in the evening. The next big question could be, how are they going to get people to leave?

Copyright © Anthony Mora 2012

I'm Anthony Mora, President and CEO of Anthony Mora Communications, Inc. and author of Spin to Win. We specialize in public relations, image development, media training and Transformational Marketing, http://anthonymora.com

SEO Press Release Tips

Business Wire, Marketwire, PrimeNewswire, PR Newswire, and PRWeb: these are the main paid wire services that American companies use. On any given day a couple of thousand press releases are sent out in the U.S. by those wire services. So, how can you separate yourself from the pack? How can your PR efforts and press releases be noticed in such a throng? It's not easy, but it's possible.

It's no longer enough to concern yourself with interesting the traditional media with your releases. Yes, you need to create press releases that meet the needs of the traditional media, but you also need to maximize the use of search engine optimization (SEO). Why do you need to concern yourself with SEO? Will it help you land a story in the New York Times or an interview on the Today show? Most likely not. But it can help in other ways. For example, when someone is searching online for a company that offers your type of product or service, are you the one they're going to find? Where do you show up when it comes to a Google search?

That's where search engine optimization comes in. SEO's primary function is to help you rank in Google and Yahoo News and for your keywords. And this is generally accomplished by knowing your keywords, and creating anchor backlinks for your blog or website.

Anchor text is the hyperlinked text on a web page. They are the highlighted words you click on when you click a link. It offers readers information about the nature of the page you're linking to. For example, this is my Public Relations Firm's website linked to a keyword. More importantly anchor text communicates with search engines. In essence it tells search engines what the page is about. It's incredibly important to use in your press releases; used effectively it can boost your rankings and particularly your Google rankings.

Your first step is to learn your primary and secondary keywords. Your press releases should reflect the keywords used on your website. You want your releases to work for you by driving search engines to your site. Don't make the mistake of only using your keywords on your homepage. Make a concerted effort to have a minimum of one of the keyword links in your press releases lead to a page on your site other than your homepage.

Focus on the first 200 to 250 words of your release. These initial words set the tone not only for the release itself but for your overall search results. You want to choose those words carefully and you want them to be targeted.

In most of my articles about press releases, my main focus is on the content; on telling a strong story with a compelling narrative. Those are points you always have to keep in mind and my follow up article on SEO press releases will cover that in more depth, but here the focus is on making sure that your releases not only are interesting but that they also are SEO friendly. A few points to keep in mind are to make sure your headline contains your primary keyword and that you pepper the release itself with three target keywords. Also, never forget to include at least one URL in the release. You never know, your release might be republished without anchor text and by including your URL you'll assure that the reader can find you.

SEO is an ever changing field and one I don't think anyone fully masters. So keep experimenting and keep writing new releases with SEO in mind, but also remember, when all is said and done, it comes down to telling a compelling story. Don't get so lost in the SEO game that you forget the basics.

Copyright © Anthony Mora 2012

Anthony Mora, President and CEO of Anthony Mora Communications, Inc. and author of several books including the definitive PR book, Spin to Win. My firm specializes in public relations, image development, media training and Transformational Marketing, We have placed clients in a wide range of media outlets including Time, Newsweek, USA Today, Oprah, People, WSJ, and CNN.  Contact us to learn why effective public relations is the most important tool in the internet age. At AMC, Inc., we help companies reach prospective clients, establish successful brands, grow their business and establish themselves as the experts in their field. Contact us at: http://anthonymora.com

PR Tips For Conducting Business Globally

These mistakes may be innocent enough, but can carry substantial, financial repercussions and unintended brand erosion. Understanding cultural differences from both a business POV and a social POV is paramount to succeeding in global waters. If you are new to the challenge of pursuing business in foreign territories please be aware, the American way, is not the only way and in some cases can be shunned.

Example: An American executive who relocated to London for a Branding position was a novice to British culture. He was a bright, head strong, opinionated American who multi-tasked constantly, had a get-it done work ethic and would happily stay up all night to complete a project. However, he was not being received well. He quickly learned from a personal branding, likeability and efficiency perspective, it was incumbent that he rehabbed his professional personality. To fit in, he needed to adjust to the locale if he wanted to be welcomed by his British colleagues. He started with simple measures, lowering his speaking voice by several octaves. He then got in sync with the speed and efficiency of his colleagues. He refrained from making any comments on the British Aristocracy. Lastly, he became much less overtly assertive. He happened to be a quick leaner, therefore his challenges were measurably overcome in a short period and it made a substantial difference. He was still American, but he was no longer the stereotypical, over-the-top, unintentionally offensive American.

This lesson was repeated (although abbreviated) when he conducting branding excursions in Central Eastern Europe, Spain, France, Australia, Germany and other territories. Each country has it's own set of business, cultural and social attributes. It is imperative to develop some cultural sensitivity and personal branding acumen before attempting to launch your brand, sale products, or increase awareness for a brand, product or service in different cultures.

Tips from a PR Expert:

1) Invest in due-diligence. Research the country's cultural history.

2) Research, the company you want to do business with. Understand their past failures and success. What are their goals? What can you offer them?

3) Research the people you will be meeting with. Are they married? Are they single? What was their previous position? How long have they been at that position? This information can serve you well.

4) If you can, determine in advance their perspective on American's.

5) Work hard, but smart. Be careful not to alienate colleagues, or put off superiors.

6) Understand the currency and the exchange rate so you can calculate quickly and efficiently, demonstrating (at some level) your understanding of their global trading system.

7) Research global shipping and customs guidelines for that territory.

8) Become your own Public Relations Consultant and brand yourself as one who is interested and understanding of their social and business culture.

In summary, and most of all, listen, restrain, adjust, assimilate and communicate best practices for that specific international territory. Demonstrating and communicating your understanding and respect for their culture and business methodology is key to success! If they do not connect with you, they will not connect with your brand.

Michele Clayborne is an International Public Relations Consultant with over 15 years of experience and a former Vice President with Fleishman Hillard International Communications. She has lived and worked in London and has conducted branding initiatives all over the world for her clients.

Disadvantage of a Press Release

Yes, you read the title right - it's about "disadvantages" of using this technique that involves spreading the word about the latest happenings in your business. While die-hard fans of press releases might feel offended, it's true that you can go overboard with the idea of using this marketing strategy - and there are some other issues as well. Let's find out how press release distribution can put you in trouble.

· The biggest thing stopping you from reaping maximum benefits of PR articles is the high level of competition for distribution. With such high competition, you will have no guarantee that press release distribution will turn out to be a successful move.

· Another problem is to find newsworthy topics. Opt for the standard, run-of-the-mill topics and your press releases will fail miserably. Creating your news article in such a good quality that they are picked up by online journalists and editors is always a hard nut to crack and makes press release distribution a tad difficult for an average Joe.

· Another disadvantage is that you will have to be consistent with writing and distributing your press releases on associated PR sites, which would take a lot of time.

· Another technical disadvantage is that your target audience may or may not be internet-savvy or like to read PR. That's why you need to evaluate your market first for location, age group, gender, lifestyle, educational background etc before opting for this technique.

· You cannot be too creative with your press releases. It needs to follow a set format - style, number of words, use of graphics etc - to be able to attract online journalists and editors.

· Another annoying thing, is that though they are used to promote your business, they cannot have direct selling or advertising tone. Getting your services promoted in a way that they don't look like promotional ads can be extremely time consuming and excruciating.

· The biggest disadvantage is to find a way to maintain a balanced approach. It's important to distribute your press releases regularly to get a result, but at the same time, it's important to draw a line. To be consistent, people sometimes rely on duplicate content (words and phrases), which instead of offering any benefits winds up being a harmful trick.

You may have noticed that though these are called disadvantages, you don't always have to face them. A right shift in your strategy will definitely turn these cons into pros, and you need to learn that trick to save your time, reap more benefits, and improve your ROI. For instance, if competition is high, lay your full emphasis on creating a killer release. When you choose an appropriate topic, which is interesting and newsworthy, your PR article manages to stand out from the crowd.

Doing this is hard, but never impossible, especially when you can engage a professional press release writer and good press release distribution service. They know all tricks of the trade and mold your article keeping your specific industry in mind. This helps them avoid those disadvantages and fetch you the benefits only. The fact of the matter is that writing and publishing press releases will improve the image and standing of your company, but it will happen only if you find a way to overcome these disadvantages.

Avoid the disadvantages by signing up to www.release-news.com

PR and Marketing Brainstorming Tips

Before you launch a PR, social media or marketing campaign, you want to make sure that you've outlined your objectives, reviewed your marketing approaches and thoroughly mined your PR stories. One of the best ways to do this is to set up a marketing brainstorming session. To start, sit down and make a list of objectives that you want to achieve before starting the process. You don't want to limit your ideas, but you do want to define the objectives you're setting out to accomplish. When it comes to brainstorming your PR and marketing strategies, your goal is to come up with a list of the ideas and approaches that will best serve you, including new business concepts, the unique value you offer, important information you offer your clients, and anecdotal stories that illustrate how you work. I also suggest spending some time focusing on how and why you can be presented as an expert in your overall field.

This type of brainstorming is generally best done as a group process. I know that if you're working on a start up, chances are you're wearing several hats, but if you have others on your team, bring them in. For example, set up a marketing- brainstorming session with your PR consultant, or, if you're doing this in-house, meet with members of your staff. If you're a one man, or one woman show, bring together some friends or associates who understand your business. You want people you can bounce ideas off. You want feedback, plus you want shared enthusiasm and energy. Make it fun; make it a game, but one with a purpose.

When you do set up a brainstorming session, allow everyone involved to speak freely. Set up an agenda but let the information flow. Think out of the box. Be creative. Remember you don't have to use all of these ideas but the deeper you drill down, the better the chances of mining some real marketing gold, so let the ideas fly. Let yourself banter about marketing, social media and PR ideas. Even if these are ideas you might never use. You never know, those might actually turn out to lead you to some golden PR nuggets.

Make a marketing list and break it down into marketing, public relations and social media. Now see how many ideas you can place in each list. For example, when it comes to social media, what are some unique Twitter, Facebook or Google+ approaches that you can take? How can you present yourself and most successfully engage with others? In the PR realm what are some different stories that you could pitch to the media? These ideas can be about your product or service, but they also might be about your journey as an entrepreneur, or they might be stories about how you've impacted others. Each one of those stories can speak to a different target audience.

In the second part of the brainstorming tips I'll be focusing primarily on social media and traditional media relations, but the brainstorming basics remain the same, step out of the box, let go of any preconceived ideas and let your creativity soar.

Copyright © Anthony Mora 2012

I'm Anthony Mora, President and CEO of Anthony Mora Communications, Inc. and author of Spin to Win. We specialize in Public Relations, Image Development, Media Training, Branding and Marketing. http://anthonymora.com

Tips for Writing an SEO Optimized Press Release

Press releases are an important tool for news communication. A SEO optimized PR is imperative if you want your content to feature significantly on search engine rankings. Studies indicate that journalists as well as consumers keep looking for such releases on their specific areas of interest.

Moreover, an SEO optimized PR helps in increasing the traffic to your site. Here are a few tips you can use when applying SEO techniques to your release.

Understand your audience

Before you sit down to write, first establish what your audience expects from your PR. This is essential because press releases are meant to increase visibility and expand your company's horizons.

You need to consider aspects like whether the audience is expecting information about a new development in the field or a new perspective on trouble shooting certain issues.

Once you ascertain what your audience demands are, it becomes easier to draft your press release. Make sure you are on the same page as your contemporaries and well-versed with recent trends to deliver quality content.

Choose the right length for your press release

You might have the best headlines and the perfect keywords in your release, but all this effort goes waste if your press release is too long. Not only will your audience be bored, internet search engines too will not index it and exclude it from search results.

Consequently, this will lead to a dip in your site's search engine rankings. Prepare a concise yet informative copy that will keep your audience absorbed.

Use keywords effectively

You need to select words that are common in search engine queries. Place these words strategically in your press release. With the right placement of keywords, you can ensure that search engines list your site when there is a relevant query.

Search engines mainly focus on headlines and the first two paragraphs. So, as far as possible, have a good keyword density in these places.

Use links and anchor text

Hyperlinks and anchor text are the most important tools of SEO optimization. With the help of links and anchor text, you can lead your readers to your site for additional information. Do not use direct phrases to guide your consumers; rather, use keywords to embed links.

However, avoid going overboard; ensure your PR does not provide too many links. Two links for 500-600 words is generally sufficient.

Keep content relevant

Your copy should be well-written to ensure a strong connect with your audience. You need not have a high-level of vocabulary in your press release; simple language works best.

Use multimedia tools like images and videos for a good impact and make sure your image is appropriately titled with the keyword included in it. Do not forget to include your company logo in the press release.

Raj Bokdia is a serial entrepreneur. He enjoys sharing his expert knowledge to help others leverage the internet to grow their business. If you are looking to hire press release writing services to buy press releases, visit QuickContent.net today!

Starbucks Spirited PR Gamble

A Big Mac along with a glass of chardonnay? Who knows? That could be on the way. Starbucks is heading in that direction. The chain will soon be selling beer and wine in select locations. Four to six stores in the Southern California area will offer alcoholic beverages by the end of this year, as will some stores in Atlanta and Chicago

The chain began testing its new spirited approach in Seattle in 2010. Starbucks now offers beers for $5 and wines by the glass for $7 to $9 in five locations in that city and one in Portland, Oregon.

The questions are: what will this move do to the Starbucks brand? And how will customers have to change their habits in order for it to pay off? Currently the chain makes most of its daily sales by 2 p.m., which explains the foray into the spirit business. On the other hand around 75% of Starbucks customers are there for take out. That won't work in the beer and wine business. These customers will have to say and enjoy their beverages in-house. And what about the kids and teens that have made Starbucks one of their staples. Will mom and dad be happy sending their kids to a beer and wine establishment?

If this were Europe, there would be no issue. There families are used to going to pubs or cafes where coffee, food and spirits are sold. But, the U.S. isn't France or England and we generally have a different take on where liquor should and shouldn't be served. And what happens when a Starbucks barista has to 86 someone? What will be the protocol for that?

Starbucks has built an amazing worldwide brand. It has regularly changed its menu offering different types of drinks and food items, but a jump into the world of beer and wine is a big one. Adding a new pastry, sandwich or fruit drink does not risk compromising the chain's brand, but offering a happy hour where sprits flow freely will challenge the way many of its customers view the company.

Only time will tell if this gamble will pay off. Because it directly impacts their brand recognition, it could either turn out to be a PR miscue or a public relations homerun. Chances are it will land somewhere in the middle. Since they are only experimenting with a handful of stores, if the publicity effect is extremely negative, they can quickly shut the program down. But if the reaction is simply lukewarm, or only somewhat negative, they will most likely give the news stores a fair shot and launch a media relations campaign extolling the virtues of this new approach. If it works, it could become a one stop shop for buying one's stimulants in the morning and depressants in the evening. The next big question could be, how are they going to get people to leave?

Copyright © Anthony Mora 2012

I'm Anthony Mora, President and CEO of Anthony Mora Communications, Inc. and author of Spin to Win. We specialize in public relations, image development, media training and Transformational Marketing, http://anthonymora.com

PR `nd Marketing Brainstorming Tips

Before you launch a PR, social media or marketing campaign, you want to make sure that you've outlined your objectives, reviewed your marketing approaches and thoroughly mined your PR stories. One of the best ways to do this is to set up a marketing brainstorming session. To start, sit down and make a list of objectives that you want to achieve before starting the process. You don't want to limit your ideas, but you do want to define the objectives you're setting out to accomplish. When it comes to brainstorming your PR and marketing strategies, your goal is to come up with a list of the ideas and approaches that will best serve you, including new business concepts, the unique value you offer, important information you offer your clients, and anecdotal stories that illustrate how you work. I also suggest spending some time focusing on how and why you can be presented as an expert in your overall field.

This type of brainstorming is generally best done as a group process. I know that if you're working on a start up, chances are you're wearing several hats, but if you have others on your team, bring them in. For example, set up a marketing- brainstorming session with your PR consultant, or, if you're doing this in-house, meet with members of your staff. If you're a one man, or one woman show, bring together some friends or associates who understand your business. You want people you can bounce ideas off. You want feedback, plus you want*shared enthusiasm and energy. Make it fun; make it a game, but one with a purpose.

When you do set up a brainstorming session, allow everyone involved to speak freely. Set up an agenda but let the information flow. Think out of the box. Be creative. Remember you don't have to use all of these ideas but the deeper you drill down, the better the chances of mining some real marketing gold, so let the ideas fly. Let yourself banter about marketing, social media and PR ideas. Even if these are ideas you might never use. You never know, those might actually turn out to lead you to some golden PR nuggets.

Make a marketing list and break it down into marketing, public relations and social media. Now see how many ideas you can place in each list. For example, when it comes to social media, what are some unique Twitter, Facebook or Google+ approaches that you can take? How can you present yourself and most successfully engage with others? In the PR realm what are some different stories that you could pitch to the media? These ideas can be about your product or service, but they also might be about your journey as an entrepreneur, or they might be stories about how you've impacted others. Each one of those stories can speak to a different target audience.

In the second part of the brainstorming tips I'll be focusing primarily on social media and traditional media relations, but the brainstorming basics remain the same, step out of the box, let go of any preconceived ideas and let your creativity soar.

Copyright © Anthony Mora 2012

I'm Anthony Mora, President and CEO of Anthony Mora Communications, Inc. and author of Spin to Win. We specialize in Public Relations, Image Development, Media Training, Branding and Marketing. http://anthonymora.com

Promoting Your Art Utilizing PR

If you're a sculptor, painter, photographer, craftsperson, musician, author, cartoonirt and/or performance artist creating your art is step one when it comes to launching a successful career. Once you've created your art, you next need to build the bridge between your art and the public. From my perspective, once you've given your time and care, blood, sweat and tears to your artwork, you owe it to your art to get it seen and experienced.

There are a number of ways to promote your art including advertising, direct marketing, guerrilla marketing, social media and publicity. For artists, PR can generally be the best route. Public relations and being featured in the media offers the validation and credibility of being featured as a news story. Often the most effective approach is a combination of medial relations and social media. The two complement each other. You can amplify and magnify your media placements via social media and a creative social media campaign can result in coverage in TV, magazines and newspapers. The most important element when launching a PR campaign is coming up with compelling stories that meet the media's needs. Below is a quick overview of approaches you can use when pitching the media:

1) Pitch An Event: Do you have a show or a gallery opening coming up? Here you have something concrete to point to. You can offer the media somewhere to go something to see. But keep in mind that journalists, editors and producers are inundated with offers to come to shows and events. So find a way to make your story different, compelling

2) Something New: Give the media something new to cover. Have you begun working in a new medium? Have you changed your subject matter? Is there a new approach or style you're utilizing?

3) Tell Your Journey: Your art is a story, but so is your journey to becoming an artist. Offer the media human interest stories about how you became an artist, how you followed your dream. Outline the obstacles you overcame, or the uniqueness of your journey.

4) Defining A Trend: Are you a part of, or are you helping to define, a new trend? You might not initially think so, but give it some thought. Don't just think of art-oriented trends, keep in mind demographic, cultural commercial, and aesthetic trends as well. Think of how you can position yourself as someone how illustrates that trend.

These are just some approaches that artists can use to help promote their work. Keep in mind that, like it or not, this is a part of your job. Have fun with it. Don't just keep your creativity for your art; use it in your marketing. You owe it to yourself, your work and the public.

Copyright © Anthony Mora 2012

I'm Anthony Mora, President and CEO of Anthony Mora Communications, Inc. and author of Spin to Win. We specialize in public relations, image development, media training and Transformational Marketing, http://anthonymora.com

Run a Successful Customer Appreciation Event

Fun Idea for a Customer Appreciation Event

If you are the owner of a small or large business, you understand the importance of customers. After all, without these important contacts, you wouldn't have much of a business, right? Therefore, it's important that you take the time to make sure all of your customers feel appreciated from time to time. One of the best ways to do this is by hosting a customer appreciation event.

Customer appreciation events do more than just let your customers know how much you value them. These important events can also be used as powerful marketing tools used to help you obtain new customers or showcase new product and services to existing customers. It also gets your customers into your store or place of business for 4-5 hours. However, before your customer appreciation event will be successful, there are several things you will need to remember.

Plan Ahead - As with any important business event a customer appreciation event must be planned out properly or else it won't be successful. The last thing you want to do is throw something together in a couple of weeks. This is especially true if you want to host a customer appreciation dinner or a with casino night entertainment. Therefore, make sure you give yourself ample amount of time to plan. Many business owners allow six months or more when planning a business event such as this. You will need time to work out all the details including: what kind of event you are going to hold, where to hold the event, how many people to invite, etc.

Build Up the Anticipation - If you want your customer appreciation events to be successful, you have to get your customers excited about attending. Casino nights are a great way to add this excitement to your event. Talk about the event with customers, post flyers, mail out "Save-the-Date" postcards, do an email blast and follow up by mailing out professional invitations a week or two before the actual event. Offer ways for your customers to earn additional casino night "funny Money" such as "liking" your Facebook page, bringing a guest or spending a certain amount the month of the event.

Make It Fun and Enjoyable - More than likely, you've suffered through a boring event before. This is what you want to avoid. You need to make sure you give your guests a reason to attend by making it fun. For example, everyone enjoys free food and drinks and the excitement of Las Vegas with casino night entertainment. Your customers play for fun and can win prizes such as free products/services or gift cards to your store or business.

Why a casino night? - Casino parties for customer or client appreciation events allow you to interact with them in a fun and exciting atmosphere. It is the great answer to the age old question every sales or marketing manager has. "Okay, so how do we get our customers or clients to attend our event and have a good time?" Your customers can enjoy snacks and drinks while you present your program and our casino tables and dealers are already in place and ready to go.

During the event, customers and sales people can sit together, cheer each other on, and laugh with each other. While Las Vegas and other casinos are designed to take the player's real money, casino night events are designed to make people feel like winners! No one loses any money and the team building camaraderie is huge! The big bonus is it gets your customers into your store or place of business for hours!

Enhance your brand and visibility to your existing customer base and recruit new customers with a well thought out, well planned, well advertised customer appreciation casino night.

Handy Dandy Guide to PR Etiquette

Tis the season for sugar and spice and everything nice. So nothing is more fitting than a post on how to navigate the complicated world of working with the media.

I took the liberty of polling a variety of media sources to learn what they like and what they don't.

Here is a rulebook of manners to successfully manage your media relationships.

Thou shall not stalk the media

Following up with the media after sending a pitch is ok. Stalking them until they answer your emails or phone calls is not. I had numerous responses from the media that they would see the same number pop up on the caller ID 10x per day. They purposely didn't answer it because they weren't interested. If you've sent a pitch and performed a round of follow up and still hear nothing, it's safe to assume that they got it and it's not a fit for them right now.

I also had a resounding response that they don't respond to every pitch because they simply don't have time, and this goes even for people they have worked with before. Most did say that they read each and every pitch, so you don't have to wonder if it ever came through. Due to high volume, they simply don't have time to respond unless they are interested.

Another pet peeve was multiple check-ins after they show interest. If they show interest in your story, it doesn't always mean it will come to fruition right away. Trust that if they are interested, they will get in touch with you when the story will run.

Thou shall not send lengthy pitches

Across the board, simple was better. A few short paragraphs is enough. If you can't get your point across concisely, work on it until you can. Press releases were overall frowned upon because they aren't customized to the individual outlet.

Thou shall embrace email

Email was the answer for preferred method by all. As far as sending images/attachments, most were OK with this as long as it was a small, lo-resolution image. The only reason you would need to send an image attachment is if you're pitching a product that would visually appear in the outlet. Otherwise you can provide a link to additional images.

Thou shall not pitch any media outlet before reading, watching, listening

Never send a pitch to anyone without being familiar with what they cover, the audience they target, and how your story will fit in.

Thou shall not pitch the wrong person

When a media outlet has multiple staff members (and in most cases they do, unless it's a blog written by one person), choose the best person that covers your specific industry and pitch them.

Thou shall understand deadlines

National magazine editors specifically had the biggest beef with this out of all the media outlets polled - understand that most work 4-6 months in advance so if you're pitching Christmas and New Year stuff now, you're way too late.

Melissa Cassera is a sought-after expert in the publicity field and specializes in helping small business owners get publicity in top media outlets. As owner of Cassera Communications, Melissa has landed placements in top magazines, newspapers and morning shows for her clients. She works with business owners, authors, professional speakers, and experts from various industries including entertainment, healthcare, information technology, fashion and beauty, human resources and more. Melissa also serves as a nationally syndicated Wellness Expert, covering the latest in healthy living advice for media outlets and audiences across the country!

To find out more about Melissa visit http://casseracommunications.com/

Online Public Relations

When it comes to online public relations it is crucial that all businesses today realize how important it is to keep a positive image on the internet and not just the old and traditional word of mouth about a company. In today's world it is incredibly hard to keep a company honest with peer to peer review sites like yelp and a plethora of consumer affair related websites that allow them to post whatever it is they please about your company.

A lot of these sites are not credible at all because they take no liability of what the user posts and they refuse to remove anything at all costs. The biggest known cases are sites like ripoffreport.com and Consumeraffairs.com where the users can go ahead and vandalize a company completely without giving up their identity and the repercussions are slim to none because the sites owners refuse to release the data and information.

So what can a company in the 21st century do about all of this? Well the only feasible solution today seems to be that companies need to partake in online public relations campaigns that help to suppress negative information about their company online. The online pr gig is a little bit different however than the traditional public relations where a press release was mailed out to all of the writers in the country at local newspapers and if they liked a story they would publish it for the world to see in their paper.

In today's world the internet makes things a lot quicker and allows us to publish information on the fly. So internet PR today requires a strong understanding of how the search engines work and what a company can do to fight off negative events like a deadly food outbreak at one of their restaurants.

First make sure that you are social. Whether or not you are a fan of the following sites make sure your business has a profile on these sites and that they are consistently updated since the search engines strive to find new content:

    Twitter
    Facebook
    Hubpages
    WordPress/Blogspot (need to have a blog presence)
    LinkedIn (for connecting with other business people)
    Ezine or PrWeb.com Account

Launching press releases constantly and letting people know that you have a twitter or a Facebook fan page that they should like is a surefire way to start successful online public relations campaign. What you also need to be keen on is making sure that your company has a website and that you own the .net, .org, and. info.

Robert is an internet expert. He has done consulting work for the online reputation company profile defenders and speaks publicly at the Venture Capital forum in Portland on the third Wednesday of each month.

Managing A Brand

Perception And Reality

How a business is perceived by people is how it is considered; this may not be the reality, but what people think will reflect on the image and reputation of the business.

For this reason, the reality is how people think, so this needs to be managed; it needs to be led and built upon. This is the job of a PR agency, to manage a business's reputation and ensure that they are perceived in the correct way. Many companies do struggle with this, certainly if they are involved in a volatile industry or get a bad coverage by the press.

Managing a brand is a big part of the job that public relations covers and an important one for the reputation of the business.

Volatile Market Conditions

The media is a fickle machine, the goal is to draw readers in (rather that to portray the whole story, telling a story that sells is the goal of the media) and keep them coming back for juicy stories.

We are living in volatile times, when businesses need to protect their image and reputation. The financial industry is a good example of an industry that has received bad press. The various financial companies that have come into the media spotlight are seeking to counteract the bad press with putting a positive spin or positive PR. The danger is that bad press will cause existing clients to leave and prospective clients to stay away.

Monitoring Competitors Brands

Part of an effective PR strategy is monitoring competitors, watching how your competitors are working and how the market is reacting to their products/services and their PR.

The roll of a PR agency is to ensure they know who the competitors are in your industry, watch what they are doing and tailor your message to fit in or react to theirs.

Managing Complaints

A big part of managing a brand is managing complaints. Very few businesses are complaint free, there are normally customers somewhere that have issues of one sort or another whatever the business.

Part of good PR is managing these complaints and being seen to answer them. If the world sees that complaints are swiftly and efficiently handled, this can have a positive effect meaning that the complaint procedure only strengthens the brand.

Coping With Negative Coverage

The more popular a business becomes, the more likely that negative coverage will occur. This could be from a competitor, the media, an internal mistake or any number of sources. Part of the PR companies roll is to prevent or migrate this negative coverage. Similar to handling complaints, negative press coverage needs to be confronted and tackled either to divert attention away or diffused.

Helpful Advice

A company's brand is the heart of the business, if the brand is badly projected then the company (no matter how good the product or service) will suffer. Choosing the right PR agency to manage and maintain the brand is important even in the early days while the business is growing.

Selecting an agency that knows your market, knows your product will ensure that they are effectively able to manage your brand as they know the market; essentially the agency becomes an important part of your business strategy.

Marketing Quotes is a free price comparison service to UK businesses to help get free quotes and advise from local marketing companies.

Handy Dandy Guide to PR Etiquette

Tis the season for sugar and spice and everything nice. So nothing is more fitting than a post on how to navigate the complicated world of working with the media.

I took the liberty of polling a variety of media sources to learn what they like and what they don't.

Here is a rulebook of manners to successfully manage your media relationships.

Thou shall not stalk the media

Following up with the media after sending a pitch is ok. Stalking them until they answer your emails or phone calls is not. I had numerous responses from the media that they would see the same number pop up on the caller ID 10x per day. They purposely didn't answer it because they weren't interested. If you've sent a pitch and performed a round of follow up and still hear nothing, it's safe to assume that they got it and it's not a fit for them right now.

I also had a resounding response that they don't respond to every pitch because they simply don't have time, and this goes even for people they have worked with before. Most did say that they read each and every pitch, so you don't have to wonder if it ever came through. Due to high volume, they simply don't have time to respond unless they are interested.

Another pet peeve was multiple check-ins after they show interest. If they show interest in your story, it doesn't always mean it will come to fruition right away. Trust that if they are interested, they will get in touch with you when the story will run.

Thou shall not send lengthy pitches

Across the board, simple was better. A few short paragraphs is enough. If you can't get your point across concisely, work on it until you can. Press releases were overall frowned upon because they aren't customized to the individual outlet.

Thou shall embrace email

Email was the answer for preferred method by all. As far as sending images/attachments, most were OK with this as long as it was a small, lo-resolution image. The only reason you would need to send an image attachment is if you're pitching a product that would visually appear in the outlet. Otherwise you can provide a link to additional images.

Thou shall not pitch any media outlet before reading, watching, listening

Never send a pitch to anyone without being familiar with what they cover, the audience they target, and how your story will fit in.

Thou shall not pitch the wrong person

When a media outlet has multiple staff members (and in most cases they do, unless it's a blog written by one person), choose the best person that covers your specific industry and pitch them.

Thou shall understand deadlines

National magazine editors specifically had the biggest beef with this out of all the media outlets polled - understand that most work 4-6 months in advance so if you're pitching Christmas and New Year stuff now, you're way too late.

Melissa Cassera is a sought-after expert in the publicity field and specializes in helping small business owners get publicity in top media outlets. As owner of Cassera Communications, Melissa has landed placements in top magazines, newspapers and morning shows for her clients. She works with business owners, authors, professional speakers, and experts from various industries including entertainment, healthcare, information technology, fashion and beauty, human resources and more. Melissa also serves as a nationally syndicated Wellness Expert, covering the latest in healthy living advice for media outlets and audiences across the country!

To find out more about Melissa visit http://casseracommunications.com/

Public Relations Trends

The trend of public relations activities moving to the web has finally come to full fruition. Today, most public relations firms spend more time, as they get more bang for their buck, promoting their client's needs online. We can expect this trend to continue far off into the future, the pendulum shift has occurred. Okay so, I'd like to talk about this for a few moments if I might.

Soon we will see a reemerging trend where public relations firms have reached all of the folks they possibly could on the social networks, but they will realize that they are still missing a good percentage of the population. Therefore they will use new tools, and strategies to reach these folks.

Coincidentally, as of the writing of this article there was a very interesting piece in the Wall Street Journal on February 11, 2012 by Carl Bialik where he asks in the title of his article; "Tweets As Poll Data? Be careful That," and in the article he states;

"Public opinion researchers' jobs has never been easier, or never been harder, depending on how you look at it. Reaching people by phone and convincing them to answer a 20 minute call is a bigger challenge than ever. At the same time, hundreds of millions of people are voluntarily broadcasting their views via twitter, Facebook and other online tools."

Further, many corporations recently have made severe mistakes attempting to promote their activities online, only to find a minority of discontent go viral on them, causing them to cut short their public relations efforts, as they ended in a fiasco perhaps, even diminishing their brand name more than ever in such a very short period of time. Suffice it to say, there are some online public relations firms who do an incredible job, and understand the Internet quite well, but beware.

Not all of these PR firms are the same as those of the past, meanwhile PR companies are challenged by small startup firms, and former executives and laid-off personnel in the public relations space who have decided to start their own companies working out of home offices. This has caused a significant drop in the amount of fees these types of companies can bill their clients for - we should expect this to continue.

If the name of the game is to put something up which is trendy, noteworthy, and has viral ability - then many of the older firms will be running redline against the one-person operations who catch a lucky break and get their clients the 15 minutes of fame they need to feel good about spending money on PR campaigns. Indeed I hope you will please consider all this and watch these trends as they fold in the future. Just so you don't miss any, you might wish to subscribe to my articles.

Lance Winslow has launched a new provocative series of eBooks on Business Issues. Lance Winslow is a retired Founder of a Nationwide Franchise Chain, and now runs the Online Think Tank; http://www.worldthinktank.net

Painless Scheduling Advice For Public Relations Firms

The public relations sector is among the busiest and most profitable. With start up companies and businesses seeking out professionals in this sector to promote awareness about their products and services and to amass followers - it is no surprise that this sector has matured into a billion dollar industry. To help us better understand what professionals in public relations firms do, here is a short breakdown of their basic responsibilities.

One responsibility of professionals in this industry is to cultivate good relationships with media outlets. This is a "public" relations business after all and as such the "public" needs to be involved if any business is to be carried out. Another responsibility of these firms is to stay informed on the current happenings at all times. This helps the firms to understand how best and when to market a given client's merchandise or brand based on the peoples' moods and emotional states. There is also the responsibility of organising promotional road trips and special social events such as fundraisings and even parties that are meant to congregate people so that they can spread the word about a given company or emerging enterprise. In most cases, the upcoming business "sponsors" these events to promote their awareness to the community.

It should be noted that of all the responsibilities, organising social events that are meant to bring people together are among the trickiest for public relations firms. Small and upcoming PR firms tend to be most affected when it comes to managing such outdoor activities. This is because they usually get their schedules all mixed up. Sometimes, although not very often; some PR firms have been known to get the venues and timelines mixed up as well. This ofcourse has a disastrous effect on the event. An event that was supposed to start early will delay as the people will have to wait for the organisers to show up. It goes without saying that the sponsors of such events would not be pleased and might even decide to choose a different PR firm to promote them next time.

To avoid such instances from ever happening, public relations firms need to take this painless scheduling advice and start using online booking systems. A good number of professionals in the public relations sector tend to refer to them as website scheduling systems although they go by many names such as online appointment scheduling systems, system schedulers, appointment schedulers and even online scheduling systems. These are systems that run online - use the internet to function and they help men and women managing hectic careers to be able to plan and manage their careers effectively. In the case of professionals working in the PR industry, online booking systems can help them manage all their appointments and schedules without a lot of hassle.

As far as the organising of social promotional events is concerned, PR firms can choose to use online booking systems to be able to keep track of all the different clients that they have and the different venues that they are required to appear and promote their brand and service awareness. The systems will also provide the individuals with the time that they are required to show up. This is done by scheduling reminders. This ensures that there is no mix up.

Better still, one does not have to carry their laptops everywhere that they go to just to have access to these systems. Any device that can connect to the internet and supports a browser will do. The browser is only meant to help the user access the messages sent through the system. Public relations firms can also use the systems to reschedule appointments well in advance so that they don't inconvenience their promoters or sponsors. All in all, these systems will help any PR firm to upgrade their level of professionalism and manage their clients' appointments with ease.

A Career in Public Relations

Just a few decades back, there were only selective career avenues which were considered lucrative and worth going after. But, today, you can see innumerable career options surging day by day, especially in the field of media and communication. Public Relation is one such field that has gained immense importance.

Skills required for a career in Public relations

Public Relation is meant for individuals who love to communicate and interact with different types of people but who also possess a great command over the language and write well.You need to possess the skill to be a good listener, evaluate the psyche of other people and work out a way to utilize this knowledge for the growth of your business. A person desirous of being successful in this field should have the subtle tact and skill to make conversation and influence the group in a party or a meeting.

No one individual possesses all these skills right from the start. Some of the adroit qualities have to be developed and for some you need to get trained. And for this, the best way is to opt for professional courses in Public Relations.

Learning Public Relations professionally: The main aim of enrolling in the professional course is to acquire special communications skills and learning to analyze the psyche and pulse of the market and consumers. An ideal course in PR should help develop confidence in public speaking while enhancing the writing abilities of an individual. Subjects such as Public Relation & Advertising Research, History of Print Media, Human Needs & psychology, Information technology and public relations, and International communication and Human Rights form part of the existing curriculum of most communication institutes.

When to start? At the earliest! Most of these professional courses need graduation as basic qualification. So, while you are completing the last year of your bachelor's course, start checking for the best colleges that offer these courses. Check out for vital information such as duration of the course, fee structure, accommodation facilities and charges if you are thinking of moving out of your town for the course and stature of the college or the university in the education field. You must also check whether the college offers any campus interviews or recruitment facilities after you complete the course. Compare all the information and select the one that suits you the best. PR Courses in India have got lot of attraction as the media industry is booming. The best known institutes in India for the course are:

    * Banaras Hindu University in Varanasi
    * Gujarat University in Ahmedabad
    * Mudra Institute of Communication in Ahmedabad
$0A    * Jamia Milia Islamia in New Delhi
    * Bharatiya Vidya Bhavan in New Delhi
    * Xavier Institute of Communication in Mumbai
    * The Delhi School of Communication

Delhi School of Communication leading institutes in Delhi for PR and Journalism Course. Author of this article A Masters in Marketing Communications - University of Westminster, London and Alumnus St. Stephens' College, BA History, Rupanjali has worked with Hindustan Times and World One Research (London).

Public Relations and Rewards Program Offers - Case Study

When people think about public relations often they envision a large corporation with 10s of millions of customers, or perhaps a non-profit firm, political campaign, government agency, or utility. It is doubtful that a "truck wash" ever came to mind when thinking about public relations, but all businesses need good PR, and some sort of branding to stay in the minds of their clientele and customer. Okay so, let's talk about this as a case study for a moment, shall we?

Okay so, what can a truck wash do to increase positive PR? Well, why not create a truck driver rewards program?

Not all truck washes have rewards programs, but this is something that I recommend that all truck wash should do because it works. If an independent truck driver or a route driver knows that they can get free coffee at your wash, and they come down that same route all the time, they will more than likely stop your truck wash rather than a different one. Further, if you can justify the price as cheaper, their dispatchers will allow them to stop on the way, and approve your facility as a vendor, and perhaps even have their other driver stop there as well.

If you offer a rewards program to companies, and independent truck drivers, it works well for both. One example might be to give one free wash for every 10 washes. Another trick might be to give people free tire dressing if they put on two of your mud flaps, or if they mention on the CB while talking to fellow truckers on the road that they got a great truck cleaning from you. There are other benefits you can also give truck drivers after they've had so many washes. Perhaps free use of the shower, free coffee, free Internet access, and free tire dressing.

If you reward your best customers, those best customers will give you the best referrals. They will also become a happy army of salespeople for you if you treat them as superstars. It is amazing what you can do, and how simple it is to use these techniques to get excellent results. In your march to increase volume at your wash, while also building brand loyalists you should be*working on ways to show your customers that you value them more than anything else.

This type of Public Relations will go far into building a strong customer base, one which can outlast any recession. Indeed I hope you will please consider all this and think on it as you build your wash clientele.

Lance Winslow has launched a new provocative series of eBooks on the Truck Washing Industry. Lance Winslow is a retired Founder of a Nationwide Franchise Chain, and now runs the Online Think Tank; http://www.worldthinktank.net

Art of Public Relations and Reputation Management

Public Relations is a very generic term covering a whole area of marketing, communication, profile raising and management strategy. It is all about how an organisation is seen by the outside world, the message it sends and the public's perception of its service or product.

According to the Public Relations Society of America (PRSA): "Public Relations is a strategic communication process that builds mutually beneficial relationships between organisations and their publics".

The means through which important information is conveyed are various, and often depend heavily upon the nature of the target audience. For instance a company communicating directly with its workforce would be unlikely to choose a public medium such as a newspaper advertisement through which to pass its information on, whilst news of a new product intending to achieve mass recognition would not be usefully served by its inclusion as a footnote in the corporate newsletter.

Edward Bernays, acknowledged by many to be the founder of modern PR, said it was "a management function which tabulates public attitudes, defines the policies, procedures and interests of an organisation...followed by executing a program of action to earn public understanding and acceptance".

The key to Bernays' analysis lies in a clear understanding of the role of management in identifying public attitudes and using them as a means through which to inform company policy, thereby responding to a need as opposed to having to create one.

Once one masters this principle and applies it as a benchmark around which a company's strategy is built, it is simply a question of taking advantage of the diverse range of media available for spreading the company message to the best effect.

Developing an organisation's PR portfolio requires an understanding of all that is effective in today's world for communicating with the intended audience. This takes us well beyond mundane, conventional advertising and into the realm of web development, search engine optimisation (SEO) and of course social media. It means establishing a presence in each and every area of activity and of developing that presence around a unitary corporate message that is short and punchy but which at the same time is able to offer a subliminal picture of the product itself.

In effect what we are describing is a complete marketing solution, an integrated PR strategy for information and reputation management.

PR then is about much more than sending out good news to as wide an audience as we are able. It is just as much about managing the message so that the public perception of a product or service is the perception you wish it to have.

Mark Richards is a professional writer working for The Middle Man, a business promotion service using its experience and expert knowledge of marketing strategy to generate important new business for its clients at a surprisingly low cost.

Role of PR

What's the first thing that pops into your mind when you hear the words: "PR"? For some it's Press Release. For others it's Public Relations. But for all companies, PR is a Marketing necessity.

Consider what PR can deliver for you that advertising can't.

1. Credibility: That's right. I don't mean that you should go hog-wild and issue press releases every other day. What I mean is that, done properly, the relations you build with journalists, bloggers, editors and analysts can ultimately propel your brand/company/product to the front lines. Nothing says credibility like a good review, a headline in a newspaper, or a positive nod from a blogger

2. Messaging: PR people spend more time working with words than just about anyone. Well, I'm not counting the folks who write documentation, or legal contracts. I'm talking about the words that get into the public eye. Who better to help finesse your messaging than the folks whose livelihood it is to get the attention of the media?

3. Media and Analyst relations: PR folks are known for their Rolodex and for their ability to network, schmooze, and develop the right relationships with the right people. They can quickly ascertain who you need to be in front of, and how to make it happen.

4. Pitching: I'm not talking about baseballs. I'm talking about pitching tightly crafted article outlines (know as abstracts) to a target list of media, journalists, bloggers and analysts. The result is INK. That is what you want: ink on paper (or pixels on a screen). You want someone to write an article, comment on a press release, ask for an interview and basically put your name in front of the world.

5. Media Database: This ties into #3 & #4. Your PR team/person will develop a database of the publications and contacts relevant to your target market and product/service. This becomes your go-to resource for pitching media and analysts.

6. Editorial Calendar: Think of all the publications in which you would love to be published. Well, the majority publish an annual calendar of topics being covered. Your PR person will take all the calendars, decide which articles are relevant, which abstracts meet the criteria, marry that to the proper media contact and pitch away. If they're successful, you get ink, which enhances your credibility and increases brand awareness. You see, it all comes full circle.

So, before you dismiss PR as "just a press release", take a step back and look at the whole cycle.

About Joanne Gore
Joanne Gore has nearly twenty years of enterprise marketing and communications experience, including corporate and small office environments. She is a talented and creative marketing professional, always positive and able to see the big picture. She possesses the organization/prioritization skills which allow her to manage multiple projects from inception to implementation, meeting deadline demands and budgetary constraints. A true mentor, Joanne marries her passion for marketing with clear, creative feedback and inspiration. Joanne develops lead generation and conversion programs, re-brands product lines, implements social media strategies, manages PR and media relations campaigns, overhauls websites, develops highly targeted marketing campaigns, and delivers results.

Joanne is a marketing geekette by day, a fitness instructor by night, and a mom 24-7.

Email: joannegore@rogers.com
Blog: http://joannegore.wordpress.com

Search Engine Optimization Versus Public Relations Strategies

While Public Relations Management as a discipline has been around for a while now, the recent trends in Search Engine Optimization and the evident overlap between these two disciplines has given rise to a turf war that show no sign of ending anytime soon. While professionals belonging to both these disciplines focus on defending their roles to a great extent, a significant mistake that everybody is making at this point is, not taking the initiative to actually understand what optimization means and how it is relevant to PR management.

Core Functions

Optimization initiatives on search engines aim to ensure that the website of any business receives a good ranking as results for relevant search terms. Consequently, the primary objective of public relations management is to ensure that the brand has a positive reputation among its target audience and stakeholders.

Where do these Functions Overlap?

When described in simple terms, the two disciplines seem so very different. Yet, the main reason behind the friction between these two functions is that they tend to make use of very similar strategies to achieve their own respective core objectives.

One of the easiest and most effective ways to enhance your website's ranking is to have other websites link back to your own pages. If your links appear on authoritative and well reputed websites, especially on respected media sites such as the New York Times, BBC etc., it s deemed to be of great value and an interesting way to convince these brands to talk about your company in their content.

Evidently, there is a conflict on this exact point, where the PR teams of a business believe that maintaining relationships with the media is meant to be their job. At the same time, optimization experts also need to innovate and find ways to engage with internet based media in order to achieve those back-links and mentions on the World Wide Web.

In addition to interacting with high-profile media, Optimization experts are also working with a number of other reputed websites which may or may not belong to media to achieve more back-links on the internet. More often than not, PR teams tend to disapprove the content of the articles of the type of websites that optimization experts chose to associate with.

The Complexities of Social Media Integration

When social media platforms such as blogs and other networking websites come into play, there is an added opportunity for content and search engine experts to post a lot of keyword-rich content to attract further attention. At the same time, PR teams will want to make use of the same space to publish news announcements and other leadership related articles. There is a clear difference of opinion and objective between these two functions which tends to convert into a violent disagreement on the ownership of these social media platforms.

The practical thing to do is for businesses to draw lines between each department and design specific jurisdictions even on the internet space. For example, it would make more sense for the optimization projects to be executed on social channels such as Facebook and Twitter, since they also benefit the rankings and the PR could take over aspects which help in effectively managing the reputation of the business on the internet.

Whether or not a solution is arrived at with respect to these two disciplines, they both remain to play significant roles in the growth of the business in the long run.

Stella R Richard is the author of various articles and currently working with Ismoip. Ismoip.com offers social media management, strategy consulting and SEO Vancouver for all types of business and brands.