Apr 28 15

Santa Claus, Secret, Stealing & Squander: Wrapping up the 2015 SABEW Spring Conference


“Why are you here?”

This was a question I was asked a few times last week while attending the 2015 Society of Business Editors and Writers (SABEW) fall conference in Chicago.

These bi-annual events are attended by a who’s who of business journalists from the U.S. and Canada, as well up-and-coming journalism students from acclaimed universities such as Northwestern and Missouri. There aren’t many PR professionals running around, so it didn’t surprise me when there was curiosity and perhaps skepticism about my participating.

But the answer to this question is pretty simple: I’m there to learn just like everyone else. Attending SABEW provides a unique opportunity to hear what issues and challenges business journalists are facing in the industry and how they cover the news. It’s also an opportunity to network and gain a greater understanding of the best ways PR professionals can work with reporters. These lessons keep us one step ahead and help shape the integrated communications plans we create for our clients.

Now onto some of the highlights from the conference.

read more…

Posted in: Media

Tags: , , ,

Apr 27 15

Richard Branson and Sheryl Sandberg believe fixing gender bias can change the world


In a recent interview, Bloomberg’s Emily Chang showed not only why Virgin Group founder Richard Branson and Facebook COO Sheryl Sandberg deserve to be role models for all, regardless of gender, but she also put an exclamation point on key gender issues that drag down business.

While I encourage you to watch the entire piece on the “Balancing Act,” we’ve provided a Cliff Notes version of the top insights from the interview. And, just for fun, see if you can decide who said which quotes – Sheryl or Richard. (The answers are at the bottom of this story.)

read more…

Posted in: Business Thoughts

Tags: , , ,

Apr 22 15

Missing the Target: Lilly Pulitzer collaboration a mixed bag for most


Photo credit: @typicalfeminist

Picture this: I am at a friend’s wedding on Saturday and the clock strikes midnight. Instead of heading to the dance floor, I huddled on a couch with a few of my girlfriends so we could purchase from Target’s newest designer collaboration line with Lilly Pulitzer.

While being completely anti-social, we tried over and over to refresh the Target app and the website in hopes of getting our hands on some of the less expensive designer goodies. It was a complete #fail. So I went back to the dance floor, knowing that waking up at 7 a.m. for the 8 a.m. store opening would be my fate.

I am no stranger to the battlefield of in-store Target sales. I was on maternity leave during the big 2011 Missoni collection launch and went from store to store to find the perfect selection for my newborn. (I still have some pieces in her wardrobe today).

As a PR practitioner, I understand why Target built up the collaborations so much, but was always baffled why they only made such limited stock. If people are willing to purchase items for triple the price on eBay, isn’t that a miss for Target’s bottom line?

read more…

Posted in: Business Thoughts

Tags: , , ,

Apr 22 15

Being a Breakout Brand takes risk, but reaps rewards


The idea that companies should always put the customer first seems like it should be a given for any service or product-oriented business. I’ve heard it said in a lot of mission statements – but are most brands really walking the walk?

Many marketers would probably admit that one or two of their customer-centric big ideas have been given the axe with responses like, “But that would require a shift in our operations” or “I just don’t see how we can implement that.” Sometimes that may be the reality, but it got me thinking about when, how and why companies should innovate and implement a major change in operations that ultimately benefits the customer.

read more…

Posted in: breakout brands

Tags: , , ,

Apr 21 15

Are “Hispennials” to blame for Sabado Gigante’s sign-off?


The end of an era is nigh for many Hispanics after Univision announced that its 53-year-old Saturday variety show Sabado Gigante will be signing off in September 2015.

Hispanics, including myself, have fond memories of watching Sabado Gigante. I remember sitting on my grandmother’s living room floor every Saturday, eating a home-cooked meal and laughing at every move made by the great Don Francisco and his sidekicks.

It would be an understatement to say that the show will be missed, but it is also a sign of a great shift taking place in Hispanic media – a focus on reaching the almighty “millennial” audience.

read more…

Posted in: Public Relations, Uncategorized

Tags: , , , , ,

Apr 15 15

Millennials are the new King Kong


Photo credit: Stéfan | Flickr

Decades ago, the Boomer generation took to the food industry like Godzilla took to Tokyo. Fast food chains like McDonald’s thrived and the microwavable burrito proved the most innovative thing since sliced bread (seriously, pre-sliced bread didn’t exist until the 1920s).

Now, these companies must adapt to the new generation – millennials.

read more…

Posted in: Marketing, millennials

Tags: , , , ,

Apr 7 15

What I Learned from Speed Dating my Co-workers


Let me stop you there, it’s not what you think. In March, the rbb team decided to hold an office-wide speed dating event where junior employees sat with each senior-level employee to get to know them on a more personal level–no work-talk allowed. The stations were prepared and each team member was seated with their first match, and with a swift strike of the gong, we were ready to begin.

read more…

Posted in: Business Thoughts, Public Relations, rbb News

Tags: , , , , ,

Apr 1 15

Creating Cultural Connectivity and Authenticity Key to Reaching Latinos


Last month I attended Hispanicize 2015, the country’s largest conference of U.S. Latino influencers and trendsetters.  While I was there, I caught up with Latina Magazine Executive Editor, Shirley Velasquez.

Shirley, who formed part of a roundtable discussion made up of the nation’s most powerful Latina journalists, agreed to a quick Q&A on timely topics — from the power of the Latino vote to what brands need to know when speaking to them.

read more…

Posted in: Hispanicize, Marketing, Public Relations

Tags: , , , , ,

Mar 23 15

#BreakoutBrand: Big “A” is for advertising for “Pretty Little Liars”


Social media has already blurred the lines of journalism, transforming everyday people into instant reporters, photographers and columnists. Now, that blurred line is bleeding over into advertising, and it should come as no surprise, especially for fans of the ABC Family hit drama, “Pretty Little Liars.”

Based on the novel series from Sara Shepard, the mystery of four best friends being terrorized by the nefarious, cyberbullying “A” has been a ratings and social media juggernaut for the cable network since it premiered in 2010.

read more…

Posted in: Marketing, breakout brands

Tags: , , , , ,

Mar 20 15

Analyzing the mixed reception to Starbucks’ #RaceTogether campaign


Pick up a copy of the March 20, 2015 edition of USA Today, and you’ll find a special section titled Race Together, which is full of stats, quotes and questions focused on race. Visit one of the 7,300 Starbucks stores in the U.S. and your coffee cup might say #RaceTogether on it.

These elements are all related to a new campaign designed to ignite conversations on race relations, and it’s the brainchild of Starbucks’ CEO Howard Schultz.

Schultz’s request was simple: He asked baristas at Starbucks stores to voluntarily write #RaceTogether on the cups of coffee they serve as a way to start a conversation with customers on race relations. Schultz, through Starbucks, has a history of tackling major social issues, so while this project isn’t completely out of left field, it has gotten plenty of feedback FAST.

read more…

Posted in: Marketing, breakout brands

Tags: , , , , ,