Stop “moving the needle.”

Not a week goes by that I do not hear a non-profit leader use the phrase “move the needle” to describe their organization’s current programming goals and deliverables. Non-profits often wrestle with how to get the talk right about their mission and goals, and the overall effect their work has on the community. The struggle to answer […]

How to happily engage a PR partner

Your to-do list is full of “priorities.” From paper, to pixels and people — the projects keep piling up, but there are only so many hours in a day. An effective communications project manager can take work off your plate while keeping your directors delighted and your to-do list clear. If engaging a communications or design firm […]

Non-Profit PR: raise your profile before you make the ask

The public is more likely to get involved, contribute, and/or share your resources when they know who you are and what you stand for BEFORE you ask them for something. It sounds so basic, yet, far too many non-profit groups embark on a fundraising, membership or policy push, without first raising the profile of their […]

Corrections and Retractions: A PR Challenge from All Angles

Margie recently wrote about the importance of PR pros learning from our mistakes. We aren’t the only ones, of course. Reading this excellent post from Scientific American is a good reminder that top professionals from any discipline are bound to stumble from time-to-time. Correcting factual errors in journalistic pieces is a delicate task. Clients, of […]

Buzzword Bingo: The PR Game You Should Avoid

I recently read aloud to Margie an email that had just hit my inbox, hoping she’d help me decipher some meaning in it. Instead, she laughed and declared the sender the resounding winner of “Buzzword Bingo.” What? How was it possible I had lived so long without encountering this magical term that so aptly describes […]

Like any great chef, the best PR pros have “broken many pots.”

Back when I was a columnist for Her Nashville Magazine (R.I.P.), I wrote about how many of the public relations skills I am recognized for today were crafted from lessons learned from my own stunningly horrific error. From a very pubic public Spellcheck embarrassment, to being unprepared for a medical emergency at a high-profile event, to printing the wrong 1-800 number […]

Sober Advice for PR Counsel in the Digital Age

“Write drunk; edit sober.” I recently saw that quote dubiously attributed to Ernest Hemingway on an office poster. Its origins are sketchy, but I believe it contains a solid gold nugget of truth. No, I’m not advising you to drink and draft. I think the blush-worthy combination of Twitter and happy hours has given us […]