- Journalists don’t want to write about something that’s already been released. In the past, readers had few media sources for this information. Today, seconds after you post a press release on the Internet, it’s no longer new news. This story is already one click away from any one of billions of people with an Internet connection. Of course, you could send the press release out under embargo beforehand, but even that signals to journalists that you’re giving the story to a ton of competitors.
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Stuck with a story that’s not new? You already know that one way to create timeliness is to find a way to tie it in to a holiday.
Valentine’s Day may have come and gone, but St. Patrick’s Day, Earth Day and Mother’s Day will be here sooner than you know it. So, I wanted to share some lessons learned regarding how to approach holiday messaging.
While powerful and timely, holiday messaging can also be challenging. You’re not only competing for the scarce time and attention of journalists, you’re competing with all the other people pitching whatever’s relevant to the calendar item you’re chasing.
So, take a step back and consider ways to come at that holiday like no one else will. Here are two examples: one building on the holiday, the other (a little like this post) developing content after the fact.
Over the past decade, I’ve had the chance to consult with organizations of all sizes regarding their need to measure, and learn from, their public relations campaigns. Fortunately, they’ve all heard PR industry teachings about the importance of accountability, which has made my job easier! But, most are confused as to how to move beyond simply measuring outputs(such as clip counts or impressions) to more meaningfully tying together outputs to business or organizational outcomes (such as leads, sales, donations, and/or survey scores).
Some of this new quest for higher-level measurement results from the now-famous Barcelona Principles, which were established by the International Association for the Measurement and Evaluation of Communication (AMEC), PRSA, the Institute for Public Relations and two other industry associations at the 2010 AMEC European Summit in Barcelona, Spain. Utilizing much of the language and ideas found in PRSA’s The Business Case for Public Relations™, the seven Principles primarily mandate the importance of setting measurable goals and objectives, and moving toward linking outputs to outcomes.
All that is great, but PR pros have been left wondering how to execute these mandates. They have plenty of guidance on objective-setting, but not as much on how best to measure outputs — and then, how best to link them to outcomes.
Fortunately, the founders of the Barcelona Principles didn’t stop there. A special taskforce was deployed to develop what has become the AMEC Valid Metrics Guidelines, a set of practical frameworks that guide PR pros through developing a holistic, meaningful measurement process. I have found the Guidelines to be of enormous help to my clients, so I hope the following brief overview will be helpful to you.
There’s been a lot written about the Affordable Care Act (ACA) and its potential impact on key industry players — i.e., pharmaceutical and device companies, clinicians, health plans and patients. But, what about the PR professionals who work alongside these players?
Whether we work in-house or on agency teams, PR professionals know that everything that affects clients affects us too. . . eventually. We can be reactive and wait for the ACA dust to settle or we can proactively help clients navigate the new landscape.
Now, there’s a huge opportunity for us to be proactive and to expand the range of internal and external stakeholders with whom we work.
Historically, health product companies have been organized around departmental “silos” – e.g., Patient Safety, Advocacy, Product Management and Access. For decades, health care PR and marketing teams focused on product/service promotion. Our goal has been to demonstrate clinical outcomes; our opinion leaders have come from academia and science.
In the wake of Medicare reform and the ACA, a new mandate has emerged: to help health decision-makers understand the relative outcomes and costs of available treatment options. The goal is now to demonstrate total value as our opinion leaders include health economists, payment authorities and policymakers (in addition to clinicians).
To help clients succeed in this new environment, PR teams need to make five key changes:
The world continues to change so quickly. Using technology to connect with target audiences is essential in penetrating the cluttered atmosphere, especially in the field of healthcare. Social media has expanded our professional coordinates and positioned communicators to participate in the real-time conversations shaping the marketplace of ideas.
For the last 20 years, I have seen how successful policy and campaign workers use technology to transform outreach and activism. Those who embrace the effort, become early adopters, build their critical mass and consume the environment like a tidal wave.
At first, it’s overwhelming, but eventually you find your groove. Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Pinterest, Groupon — initially, it did not occur to me to join them. However, for career insight or to get a better deal on frozen yogurt, it is essential to be plugged in. Patterns definitely emerge, and information management becomes key.
I’ve seen the impact firsthand at my organization, the Oncology Nursing Society. We’re engaged in a multitude of membership advocacy efforts that educate decision-makers on nursing and cancer.
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