You will never write dialog in business writing, except when you do. In press releases, you often have to quote someone. In e-mail exchanges, you might have to recount a verbal conversation accurately. Guys, it just helps to know how to write and punctuate dialog without looking like a jerk.
We have all been there, the client or boss needs a document by the end of the day and you can’t even complete a full sentence. Pressures are swelling and you feel stuck. The blinking curser or ink spot from your pen resting on the paper are staring back at you with remorse. What to write about? Where to begin?
After I graduated college and before I found my first career opportunity, I made a regular habit of watching The Today Show with Hoda Kotb and Kathy Lee. One day, Hoda was thumbing through a newspaper (which she usually does to generate timely conversations with Kathy) and exclaimed something along the lines of “oh my gosh, do you see these Post-it notes (appropriately marking the page she was trying to find)? The people at 3M noticed I was always losing my page when I was talking about a story.” ( “ahhh,” sang the heavenly angles.)
It’s no secret that I’m not a fan of interns. By no means is it the concept of an internship. I had a great internship in college and got a lot out of my experience. It’s the caliber of interns that are coming through the door. An intern is brought into a company to learn about the business, gain hands-on experience and observe the inner-workings of a company in the industry they aspire to enter upon graduation. If effective in their role, interns can be invaluable to an organization and the staff which they support. Sadly, this isn’t always the case. Even worse, my recent experiences lead me to believe they are the exception. . .NOT the rule.
This week I interviewed Lauren Fernandez. Lauren is one of the first people I met on Twitter who has always inspired me to take (smart) chances in the Social Media world. She is friendly, energetic, and a real mentor to new and experienced PR professionals. This caffeine addict relies on coffee to get her through the day but Diet Coke will also suffice. Lauren enjoys spending time with her family, especially her grandparents. When she isn’t working as Marketing Coordinator for Mensa, you can find her at the beach or just being outside listening to AC/DC or even to 2 Live Crew. And so, I give you Lauren Fernandez discussing her position at Mensa and how she became what I call a Social Media superstar.
Recently a question popped up among one of our “journalists-seeking-experts” services asking a ridiculously simple question. I’m not going into specifics, like which service it came from, who asked it, or what it was — this hack hasn’t earned a call out, I believe them to be a victim rather than an instigator.
Back in my day we used to say, “Any PR is good PR.” We had no need for crisis PR or Twitter customer service. So your tragedy ended up on the front page of The New York Times? At least it was above the fold! In a few days from now, no one will remember what happened. Continue reading →
The very smart Heather Whaling asked on her blog Wednesday whether social media begets mainstream coverage. Now, for me, that gets my attention, because a) it’s totally up the alley of my passion within the PR business (namely, the integration of traditional PR and social media PR; and b) it’s a question that I think we are going to start asking ourselves a lot more in the coming months. Continue reading →
Here’s a bold statement that I’m sure I’ll be forced to prove somewhere around the end of this post: the things we write when we flack, market, and rep products can change the course of history.
I’ll let that stew in your brain-soup for just a moment while I take what must seem like a sharp right turn in this argument.
I want you to think about makeup, and what makeup is all about. I’m not anti-makeup. I wear it just like any other businesswoman does. Without foundation, powder, eyeliner, eye shadow, lip liner, lipstick, mascara, and eyebrow pencils, our faces do not look very pretty. We have blemishes and freckles and age spots and wrinkles. We have sallow eyes and pale lips and bushy eyebrows and ingrown hairs.
Without makeup, we are ugly. Makeup makes up for these deficiencies.