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Category: Business Communications

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Reaching Today’s 35 and Under Crowd

Every generation — boomers, Gen Xers, millennials, and beyond — brings its values and frames of mind to the world. For communicators and marketing pros with deep experience, say 20+ years, that experience isn’t necessarily an advantage when you’re targeting millennials. We don’t think like them. We don’t talk like them. Because we’re not them. …more

A PR Announcement That Defies “Elvis Has Left the Building”

Every company experiences a key employee leaving for the proverbial greener pasture. It happens. Boards have been known to kick CEOs to the curb. Think GE’s announcement last year that it was parting ways with John Flannery with the obligatory “we thank John for his significant contributions and long service to GE,” code for he …more

Game of Thrones Depicts the Best of Persuasive Language

I’m not talking about our friend Lord Baelish who discovered that chaos wasn’t exactly a ladder. I simply like the line. With the last season of “Game of Thrones” soon to kick off, it’s a good time to dust off a lesson in persuasive language from the show. Let’s turn our attention to Tyrion’s plea …more

I Wrote 1,000 PR Blog Posts and All I Got Was This Lousy T-Shirt

Writing feeds my soul, so producing 1,000 blog posts on public relations, storytelling and everything in between hasn’t exactly been combat duty. Still, there’s something about a round number with three zeroes that causes one to pause, to consider what went into this corporate blogging journey. Even though the destination was unknown, my anxiety was …more

I Still Believe Levity Is the Killer App for Business Storytelling

I wrote about Zappos using levity as the killer app in its communications a few years ago. Before going further, it’s worth noting that levity has a lower bar than humor. We’re not trying to channel Jon Stewart or Conan O’Brian. Levity delivers a smile, a grin (bigger smile) or, at its best, a low-decibel …more

Putting a Face on a Company

Check out the headline in The Wall Street Journal last month. “Apple Teams with Jack Ma” The headline didn’t say “Apple Teams with Alibaba.” Why? And don’t say because the word “Alibaba” wouldn’t fit in the space for the headline. It turns out that both words take up seven characters. I think it’s because the …more

What the Hell Was Huawei Thinking?

You’ve heard the phrase, “read the room.” Huawei can’t read the room. In spite of an in-house communications team that includes talented pros from the West, they continue to make amateur mistakes. The latest comes in the form of an open letter to the U.S. media published last week in The Wall Street Journal. If …more

PR Undervalues the Anecdote, One of the Best Springboards into Storytelling

Journalists get anecdotes. PR not so much. A few years back, we analyzed three months’ worth of tech stories in The Economist breaking down the content type by category. It turned out that 17 percent of the articles were anecdotal. . We consistently find that the anecdotal content in business publications ranges from 15 to …more