Friday, September 28, 2007

The By-Liner

My latest PR insider tip for those who slyly read my blogs for good ideas yet don't post comments (please - that's all I ask!) - I have a super secret public relations industry tip. Why I give these out, I don't know. I guess it's to position myself as a resource and show I am an honest and trustworthy PR professional in Vermont.

A by-lined article is what my secret of the week is. It is an article written by you or someone of vast knowledge in your organization on a topic of interest to the public you are trying to reach. It IS NOT an article written by you on what you want the public to know about your company. For example, if you are a health related organization and you would like consumers to know more about you and your services, then you would write an article for the local papers in those communities on some useful tips or advice that the paper editors (yes, you should contact them first) would like their readers to know more about. You only mention you and your organization at the end as a little info piece on the author. This helps to position both you and your company as a trusted resource on certain health topics and therefore helps build your credibility instead of the newspaper thinking you are just a shameless self promoter and never printing what you send them anyway.

Does this make sense? Please comment if you have thoughts and you can always get in touch with me directly via my website to discuss such ideas further and how I can be of assistance to you and your organization.

Thursday, September 20, 2007

Web Centric Marketing

What does this mean? Another fancy marketing term used to lure in the un-marketing savvy client? Maybe, but sometimes marketing folks create marketing terms for things so they can say what might take a paragraph to say in three little words. Isn't that one of the reasons people need help with marketing in the first place? Doh! Yes, even I have been a bit Simpsonized - a-ha! There is a marketing term right there! Is it easier to say:

a.) I've been Simpsonized?
b.) I now say things that are often said on the Simpsons because I live in the state where the American public decided the Simpsons live?

Sooo - what is web centric? (Comments would be cool here since there haven't been any in a while and my tracking devices show that people are indeed reading my blogs!)

Web centric is providing marketing services based on...yes! The Web! That means your website must be the focus and all other marketing umbrella items swirl around the website. And, here is a BIG, dirty, industry secret - lots of old school advertising firms don't want to play that way because then they won't get their big advertising commissions, because figuring how to make money online is new, unchartered, and scary territory to those folks who have shunned such activities as online dating (yes, of course, I have fully embraced such activities, although that doesn't mean it isn't still unchartered territory).

In my fervor to start my own public relations business in Vermont, I am in a continual quest to network with folks who are embracing this web centric style of marketing. In my journey, I have come across two I would like to give kudos to here:

Shark Communications - I did a lot of research of agencies who did not offer in house public relations services and how I might be of service to them and them to me, and the one that sparked the most marketing fun and excitement in our fields of work was the gang over at the end of Battery Street at Shark Communications - These guys (and gals) are ALL about the web and I must give Principal, Pete Jacobs, the credit for broadening my vocabulary to use the marketing term "web centric." I also thank them for giving me the opportunity to work with an agency to forge ahead with all sorts of new media ideas, concepts, tactics and all those other fun marketing words we like to use.

Shadow Productions - I have just started working with these folks as a vendor for electronic press kits, interactive press information, and the more "theatrical" side of marketing and am also pleased to say, my first meeting with them sprouted all sorts of new ideas that continue to position me more and more as a professional storyteller than just some PR person than ever! And that, makes me rest easy at night - even if I stay up too late writing blogs! Check them out too -

Wednesday, September 12, 2007


I love when I am inspired to write a random post as opposed to sitting down to think of one!! Today as I was cruising along Shelburne Road, going to the bank (KeyBank of course), stocking up on cat food (Pet Food Warehouse of course), and getting an oil change (without a shadow of a doubt from my favorites at Shearer Pontiac - home of the VIBE!!!), I came across a group of blue people dancing at the rotary before South Willard Street and at first thought - the Blue Man Group in Vermont? I quickly dismissed that idea as they are definitely not cool enough to dance around during local soccer mom traffic where South Burlington and Burlington slap five. Instead I saw it was the marketing funhouse known as the Burlington team of 1-800-Got-Junk. I see these guys at every Chamber of Commerce event and absolutely love their style - now even more so after the "blue man dance." Not to mention that the concept of 1-800-Got-Junk is a perfect fit with Burlington.

1-800-Got-Junk comes and takes away and properly disposes of, recycles, and collaborates with other groups to re-use your junk, crap, and stuff that you can't get rid of yourself, yet you would prefer it not sit around adding to potential white trash status. I love this concept for the Burlington area for two main reasons:
1.) It is much more environmentally friendly than (gawd forbid) dumping it, bringing it to the dump, or having it sit around in some inconvenient place.
2.) It gives me a reason to say: Stop being lazy Burlington jerkfaces and leaving your junk on the side of our streets - take some responsibility for yourselves, hack up the fee, and get the dudes at 1-800-Got-Junk to take it away for you!
How can we ever become globally responsible if we don't take the extra step ourselves? So, my kudos of the day - love my service team at Shearer! Kudos of the month - 1-800-Got-Junk!!!

Monday, September 10, 2007

Falling Into Publicity

I started off this blog griping about the industry, clients, money, etc. Then I deleted it and am starting over. I guess the ultimate gripe is that starting your own business is a lonely process. You no longer have co-workers or associates to plot the demise of your boss while pretending to be in a very important meeting, to sneak off with for extra long lunches downtown on a nice day, to yell back and forth over cubicles or office doors, or to say "screw working out, we're going for margaritas!" On a serious side, you also really don't have folks to bounce ideas off of or to blow off steam with after a crappy phone call.

And, in all fairness to myself and the industry, I guess I can't really use my blog to gripe. But, I can say that everyone has their ups and downs and everyone is human. In this humanity is also where we can really shine and connect with other human beings as people. Because at the end of the day what matters isn't your work, clients, or how you succeeded or failed, what matters is if you helped someone feel better about themselves, helped someone think more clearly, and if you helped yourself love and be loved. That is what matters. Oh and for my blog tags - I am Rachel Carter, a Vermont publicist and more importantly, a storyteller.