All posts by John Trader

5 Ways Fitness Helps Sharpen My PR Saw

There is a school of thought that striking a balance between professional life and extracurricular activities allows you to work towards a healthy body to facilitate a healthy mind.  Not an easy task as demands increase in our profession and we increasingly discover that in the fast paced world of PR, dedication, effort and real time expectations require us to seemingly be on the job 24/7.  Continue reading

PR and Social Media – Don’t Press the Ignorance Button when you Know it Doesn’t Work

The other day I stepped on to the elevator with several other people at the office building where I work.  We stood there for about 5 seconds waiting for the doors to close and when they didn’t, a man reached over and hit the “close door” button.  The doors remained open.  As everyone else waited patiently, this guy hit the button again and again and again for what seemed like 10 seconds until finally the doors closed.  As I watched him initially frustrated by beating the button repeatedly to no avail, I began to think, “This has applications to PR via social media.”

(FYI — There are many theories about whether the close door buttons on elevators actually work or they are merely there for psychological reasons to assuage our lickety split mentality that comes with a world built on speed and the value of time).

So what exactly does this have to do with PR and social media you say?  Continue reading

Abercrombie’s Latest Move – Bad PR or Calculated Branding Campaign?

Being the news aficionado’s that we PR Pros are, by now I’m sure that you caught the news that Abercrombie & Fitch coincided a release about their fiscal 2nd quarter earnings increasing 64% with a not so subtle side note that they have offered money to Mike “The Situation” Sorrentino from MTV’s “Jersey Shore” to stop wearing the clothing brand on their show.  Hmmm.  Interesting footnote to an earnings release, don’t you think?

Now, I have never seen one millisecond of the TV show but I have seen commercials for it leading me to believe that it not only isn’t something that I would want to watch but falls under the category “Realty Trash” in my book.  However, Abercrombie’s announcement did give me pause to think, “Was this a smart move or bad PR?”  After all, it seemed like a calculated risk for them to blatantly send a message to viewers of one of the top Reality shows in the U.S. that they think Mike “The Situation” is a bad influence and dare I say, a loser.  Continue reading

PR – In Media Relations, the “P” stands for “Personal”

I don’t watch much TV, and when I do it’s usually programs I have recorded so I can skip the commercials, but the other day I saw a commercial that caught my eye and got me thinking about PR.

The commercial depicted a couple approaching their local bank in an attempt to walk in and talk to a live person only to be stopped at the front door by a bank employee to let them know that if they were looking to perform a transaction, the ATM machine was just down the block.  Pressing on, they reiterate their intention is simply to speak with a live person when another bank employee comes out and states, “Is there a problem here?”

Frustrated, the couple walks away as the voiceover reminds the viewer that in a world of impersonal banking largely done online, their bank is always open and live people are available to talk to you at any time. Continue reading

What Can The Boy Scouts of America Teach a PR Professional?

I was a Boy Scout as a kid.  And if you’re wondering, yes, I can still rattle off the Boy Scout Law quicker than a striped lizard on hot asphalt.  In addition to the multitude of moral, ethical, social, academic and cognitive skills that my experience as a Scout taught me, the most tangible life lesson I walked away with from that experience was also the Boy Scouts of America motto – to always “be prepared.”  This simple mantra transcends the notion that we should always be ready for an emergency by keeping a flashlight, food, battery-powered radio and other items on hand, or know how to build an outdoor shelter in cases of disaster.  Like the time I was on a camping trip and had to administer first aid to a fellow Scout who fell and broke his arm and badly cut his head during off trail hiking.  I was scared, but I was prepared.  The Boy Scouts instill comprehensive standards for youth that carry forward and prepare them for their adult lives, helping to improve relationships, work and family lives and the values by which we live. Continue reading