That memorable day when I met the world’s greatest journalist

October 22, 2019

In my last journalism job before I switched careers, I worked in the late 1980s as the Los Angeles bureau manager for what was then a small, family-owned, recreational boating newspaper called The Log (as in ship’s log). The Log was based in San Diego and published every other week. It was a free newspaper […]

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A local angle to national/international news = a successful placement

September 29, 2019

Regardless of your political affiliation, the biggest story in the national news right now is the efforts by Democrats to impeach Pres. Trump. My hometown newspaper, The Oregonian (based in Portland, Ore.) published a story in its edition today that is an example of one of the proven strategies I will teach in my News […]

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Become a comms hero by using what already exists at media outlets

September 20, 2019

I was watching a news story the other day on the local ABC-TV affiliate where I live and noticed they have a feature called “Everyday Heroes.” It highlights someone in the community who does great things for others with not much fanfare. I later realized that what I did next would make a good lesson […]

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Here’s how to boost your success when making a media pitch

May 19, 2019

One of the highlights for me of the 2019 Portland Communicators Conference was a panel discussion among three members of the Portland Business Journal (PBJ) editorial staff. Editor Suzanne Stevens was joined on stage by reporters Pete Danko and Elizabeth Hayes. Their topic: how to best interact with the PBJ staff so you don’t waste […]

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Lessons from this year’s Portland Communicators Conference

May 14, 2019

I had the pleasure of attending the Portland Communicators Conference on May 3, presented by the Oregon chapter of the Public Relations Society of America. Here are a few of the many gems I learned that day: 1) Our mind makes 35,000 decisions each day. 2) Today’s children don’t expect to wait for anything. 3) […]

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Don’t forget that every story has a beginning

October 12, 2018

Every story has a beginning, middle and end. But many public relations professionals neglect to emphasize what can be the most important part: the beginning. Let me explain by giving you two examples. At a large bank where I was once employed, I started working with a new regional president who had transferred to my […]

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Avoid crises by being aware that times constantly change

June 23, 2018

Many years ago I took a media training class in Portland, Oregon presented by veteran journalist and communications consultant Paul Hanson. The wise Paul explained that one cause of a corporate communications crisis is that “times change”. Paul explained that behavior on the part of a senior executive that was acceptable in the past might not be acceptable […]

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When it comes to media relations, do you want to be the Apple or the Donut?

January 8, 2018

At PRSA’s annual international conference in Boston last October, I had the opportunity to hear a variety of speakers from a large number of different companies. Speakers at two of the breakout sessions I attended represented a vast difference in media relations strategy that I wanted to share with you. One of the breakout session […]

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How to get the most out of attending a national communications conference

November 5, 2017

During my career, I’ve attended more than a few of the national communications conferences organized by the Public Relations Society of America (PRSA) and the International Association of Business Communicators. The most recent one I attended was 2017 in Boston when I was among the 2,300 attendees at PRSA’s national conference. These conferences can be […]

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The instant nature of today’s news: Will your organization be ready when CNN calls?

July 4, 2017

My hometown newspaper, The Oregonian, reported today that a small airport in the small Oregon city of Hillsboro was the site of a bizarre helicopter hijacking attempt yesterday (July 3). The incident ended when police shot and killed the would-be hijacker. The last paragraph of story caught my eye because it contains an important lesson […]

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