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Friday, August 29, 2003

PR Blogs and Traveling

I will be on travel from now until Sept 4th. United Defense has a test firing for one of our weapons at Yuma Proving Ground. Since I will be in the middle of the Yuma, AZ desert baking in the sun, without access to many of the ammenities we are so use to using on a minute by minute basis, I will be unable to update my blog.

In the meantime, I suggest that you visit and learn about RSS because when I get back I am planning to have a lengthy piece discussing it. Hope you all enjoy your Labor Day.

Thursday, August 28, 2003

Schmitt Music Selects Fast Horse Inc.

Schmitt Music, a family-owned music retailer that operates 22 stores in nine states, has tapped Fast Horse Inc., a Minneapolis-based consumer public relations agency, as its public relations agency of record.

What's the secret to Web writing?

Writing for the Web isn't difficult although by the content on the Internet, you would think it was. In an effort to change the world we live in (our at least the Web world) has put together a list of seven deadly sins committed by those who write on the web.

Here is an executive summary:

1) I think I’m God
2) I go on and on and on…
3) I can’t spell and have awful grammar
4) I’m locked in a print view of the world
5) I’m not very good at writing headings
6) Actually, I don’t think content is very important
7) Don’t have seven points if there’s only six!

Number three on the list is the one I struggle with the most. How about you? Check out an explanation of each of the deadly sins here.

Wednesday, August 27, 2003

Celebrity Public Relations

These days I can't imaging wanting to do public relations for a celebrity, most celebrities are too high maintenance and those that aren't are usually in prison. But with TV shows hyping PR like HBO's Sex in the City have brought a whole new look to PR. If this is something you are interested check out the PRSA Teleseminar on , September 9, 2003.

Related to the topic of celebrity pr, I found some interesting articles that discuss some of the challenges i.e. Koby. Read about some of the Celebrity Endorsement Deals Gone Astray from or if you are famous and you are looking for advise on How to Handle Being a Star in Trouble check this article out.

Get the latest on Koby Bryant from

Tuesday, August 26, 2003

Weber Shandwick Promotions

Weber Shandwick - Twin Cities announced it has promoted five employees:

Dawn Lindgren and Carolyn Parsons from account executives to senior account executives and Rebecca Huff has been promoted from assistant account executive to account executive of the of their corporate relations group.

Talia Beck from senior account executive to account supervisor in their financial services group.

Angela Seutter from senior account executive to account supervisor of their investor relations and technology group.

Are you pitching to blogs?

The Minnesota chapter of the is currently taking an online poll to see how many PR pros are pitching blogs at the same time they pitch traditional media. To cast your vote and let your voice be heard click here.

How to Build Lasting Value

Most public relations professionals (at least the good ones) strive to build lasting value for their company or clients. In his new book, , Medtronic CEO Bill George uncovers how to build lasting equity in a company by .

To get more details on Bill and his new book click here.

Monday, August 25, 2003

Growing Minneapolis Agency Makes Time for Fun

According to the Business Journal, Olson + Co. has become one of the hottest advertising agencies in the Twin Cities over the past few years. Known for its work with the Minnesota Wild, Detroit Pistons, Cleveland Cavaliers, and Phillips Distilling Co., the firm has been caught up lately in a constant whirlwind of new business and new projects.

Get the full Business Journal story here.

Fantastic Proofreading Tips

Do you struggle with proofreading your own work? I know I do! .

Wednesday, August 20, 2003


New Rules to Take Effect January 1, 2005

NEW YORK (August 19, 2003) - The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) today issued an Order of Reconsideration (FCC 03-208) that delays the effective date of its new regulations on fax advertisements until January 1, 2005.

The amended regulations, originally scheduled to go into effect on August 25, 2003, requires individuals and businesses to obtain the signed written consent of any parties to which they wish to fax unsolicited advertisements.

The reconsideration will allow additional time to comply with the new rules, while also allowing the Commission more time to consider any "petitions for reconsideration and other filings that may be made on this issue." The American Society of Association Executives (ASAE) was one of several business organizations that filed a Petition for Emergency Stay and Clarification of the amended regulations.

"PRSA is pleased that the FCC has decided to reconsider this new regulation on fax advertisement," said John Colletti, PRSA's chief financial officer. "This regulation would have had a major impact on the way all associations do business. Should any action be necessary, PRSA is prepared to comply and will ensure that all of our members are informed of any developments."

According to a press release issued by the FCC today, "the extension keeps in effect, until January 1, 2005, the exemption that allows entities to send unsolicited fax advertisements to individuals and businesses with which they have established business relationships. Until January 1, 2005, those transmitting faxes do not have to obtain the express written consent, including signatures, from recipients with whom they have established business relationships. Regardless of the extension, however, fax transmitters still must obtain prior express permission from fax recipients with whom they do not have established business relationships."

For more information on the FCC, the Order of Reconsideration or the new fax regulations, please visit the Federal Communications Commission Web site at

The , based in New York City, is the world's largest professional organization for public relations professionals helping to advance the profession and the professional, with nearly 20,000 members with 17 Professional Interest Sections and 116 Chapters nationwide who represent business and industry, counseling firms, government, associations, hospitals, schools, professional services firms and nonprofit organizations.


Magers is Leaving Do We KARE?

With Paul Magers leaving the top-rated news cast in the Twin Cities, will the statrion loose ratings. The answer is in the stations branding according to experts interviewed for today's Star Tribune article.

Although Magers has been KARE's unquestioned on-air leader, the station also has a strong cast of other news personalities who can step into larger roles, said Bruce Tait, managing partner of Fallon Brand Consulting in Minneapolis.

Tuesday, August 19, 2003

Blackout Hurts Advertisers?

The New York Times and have both covered the impact the east-coast blackout had on advertisers. Surprisingly the impact does not appear to be as bad as it could have been according to NY Times reporter Stuart Elliott here is an excerp from his story:

At another large media buying agency, Initiative Media, part of the Interpublic Group of Companies, discussions with the networks are under way, said Carolyn Bivens, president and chief operating officer in Los Angeles. The talks are centered on what are called make-goods, which are compensatory commercials provided to advertisers if ratings fail to reach promised levels.

At least the timing was not so terrible, Ms. Bivens said. "We have to be glad this happened now and not a month from now," she said, "when we've got the new season on all the networks and the advertisers are full-swing into their third-quarter campaigns."

The timing also worked to the advantage of many agencies, which were on their summer-hours schedules, closing on Fridays or giving employees half-days off. "If you're going to have the plug pulled, a summer Friday is when it ought to happen," said Jan Sneed, senior vice president at the Grey Global Group in New York.

To get's version of the story click here.

Monday, August 18, 2003

Magers Leaves KARE 11

Veteran anchor to accept the lead anchor position at KCBS-TV in Los Angeles. According to the Star Tribune, he made the announcement at the Minikahda Club Saturday evening, but his departure wasn't confirmed until KARE announced it today.

Magers will leave the NBC affiliate for the CBS station -- KCBS -- in Los Angeles. He has been at KARE since 1983. For a photo of Magers click here.

Events for Women in Communications

The Association for Women in Communications is kickin' off their fall season with a "Fun-raising" Party featuring Chris Heeter. The author of Daily Degradations for Women Who Should Know Better and founder of The WILD Institute, Heeter will present “Fun in the Workplace: The Power, the Potential, and the Peat Bogs.”

The kickoff event will be Sept. 16, 2003, from 6 to 8:30 pm at St. Anthony Main Event Center. Click here for registration information.

Friday, August 15, 2003

Ventura's show is no-show

Since stepping down as governor, Jesse Ventura has been trying to put together a talk show on MSNBC, well don't hold your breath. What once was supposed to be a nightly talk show has now turned into a Saturday night date has been set for the first show.

Get the full story from the Star Tribune.

Wednesday, August 13, 2003


Brandmouthing is word of mouth marketing and could be the growing trend for business marketing. Consider what says about Brandmouthing:

Think about it. Brands such as Apple, Harley-Davidson, Starbucks, Krispy Kreme, and Prêt A Manger were built on the power of word-of-mouth referrals. No large advertising budgets there! The brands relied on the consumers who experienced the brand to go forth and preach and convert the masses. And based on the track record of those companies, I would say they did so quite successfully.

Get the full story here...

Employment in Minnesota Suffers

Despite reporting a month ago that PR employment is on the rise, the Minnesota employment rate over all continues to lag.

Unemployment in Minnesota rose to 4.6 percent in July, the highest level in 15 months. The Star Tribune reports today that Minnesota has lost 67,600 job since the recession began back in March 2001. Get the full story here.

Tuesday, August 12, 2003

Martha's PR Problem

Remember Martha Stewart? The Boston Herald has an enlightened article in today's paper that reveals some of the PR mistakes her team of lawyers made in the days leading up to and following Martha's indictment. Here is a quote from the article:

"If you respond two or three days later, the story is already framed in the public's mind,'' said James Haggerty, an attorney and head of the New York City-based PR Consulting Group.

Greatest Moment in Sports

Herb Brooks tragically died in a car accident yesterday, leaving behind a legacy much greater than just a sporting event. The 1980 Miracle on Ice was exactly that--a miracle. And it changed not only the game of hockey, but transformed the country at a time when the Russians seemed invincible.

As four-year-old boy in 1980 I don't remember much, but this article sums a lot of what I do remember. Mr. Brooks with out question you will be remembered as we reflect on the greatest moments in sports history.

If you would like to see pictures of Herb or leave a memorial click on the respective links: Photos / Memorial

Herb's death can be used as a reminder of the importance of wearing your seat belt, because a seat belt may have saved his life.

Monday, August 11, 2003

Writing Well Cont...

Here is a wonderful piece on writing well.

Number One Fear

If your like most people you fear spiders, death and public speaking? In fact list public speaking as their number one fear!

While shows like Fear Factor cater to our fear of heights and eating gross food, public speaking doesn't get as much attention. As public relations professionals we are faced with conquering this fear on a daily basis. Do you struggle with public speaking? Have you consider joining Toastmasters? Here is a quick list of public speaking tricks to help reduce your anxiety.

Friday, August 08, 2003

About a Blog has an interesting FAQ on Business Blogs today. Is a blog right for your business? Find out how blogs can offer publicity for your business.

Plus, courtesy of, here are five key questions you need to know the answers to when starting a business blog.
Writing Good

Yeah, I know the title of today's column should be "writing well," but I figure the people that really need help will type "writing good" into their favorite search engine and it will lead them here.

First writing tip...get to the point.

The Star Tribune has a wonderful weekly column written by Stephen Wilbers on writing, this week's topic is writing with style and substance.

To be sure, most PR/Journalism people are hyper-sensitive when it comes to writing style, but its Friday and I say it is time to relax.

Thursday, August 07, 2003

Advertising to the Right

Not to be confused with advertising to the Right-Wing, the latest trend in Web ads is to separate ad content from news content.

Many consumers feel advertisements are taking over their lives, so to prevent any further invasive behavior Up2Speed reports that the Shropshire Star is placing all of their ads to the right instead of integrating them like many sites do.

Is this an increasing trend or just a flash in the pan? Stay tuned.

Wednesday, August 06, 2003

Growth Opportunities

Whether you like to admit it or not everyone has room for growth. So it is in the spirit of growth that Minnesota PRSA offers its annual Skills Seminar. This year's theme is "What’s In Store for Communicators." Breakout session topics include career development, investor relations, brand management, media relations measurement, and many others.

Minnesota PRSA will also be incorporating it monthly meeting into the Skills Seminar at which Paul Holmes, editor of the Holmes Report and president and chief executive of the Holmes Group, will speak.

The event will take place September 18 at the Mall of America. You can .

Tuesday, August 05, 2003


Top public relations professionals have long understood the importance of networking to drive business and to find jobs. Well, just in case you haven't bought into this idea yet here are two powerful articles that might convince you otherwise.

The first article is from today's Star Tribune business section and offers some useful suggestions.

The second article is from the Business Journal and highlights Minnesota PR-pro Paul Maccabee of the Maccabee Group, giving some more networking ideas.
Natural Foods & Public Relations

Public relations company Carmichael Lynch Spong has expanded its activities in the natural foods products business by signing an agreement to represent DrSoy Nutrition. Get the full story from The Business Journal here.

Monday, August 04, 2003

Flash Mobbing

Flash mobbing is a new term to most of us but it is a growing fad among young adults and savvy internet users. In fact, the Mall of America was flash mobbed in mid-July!

So what are these stunts and are the dangerous? Could it be a public relations tool? Get the latest buzz here.

Friday, August 01, 2003

New Search Engine Tools

If you are like most people, when you need to do a search on the web you just go to . But, one of the things that I have learned over the short time I have been in this business is that if you do the same thing everybody else does you will end up where everyone else does. So what can you do to seperate yourself from the pack? Start experimenting.

In this months issue of they offer some useful ideas on how to expand your web sluthing capabilities, "including such promising new search sites as Teomo and Vivisimo." Another problem a lot of people have with using search engines to getting the right key words. To cure that Tactics recommends visiting Magic Search Words.
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