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Category: Language

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The Communicator’s Guide to Deciphering Acronyms

It’s weird. We’re in the business of communications. You would think that we’d be OK with deploying full words. But that’s not how we roll. I put out a call to arms across the Agency for acronyms that surface on a regular basis. The list below doesn’t pretend to capture every single acronym. Still, it …more

3M Leans on Owned Media to Counter Punch

  Owned media at its best can provide a counter-balance to perceived injustices from the media and social channels. Organizations ranging from Google to Walmart to the Brookings Institution have depended on their blogs to deliver their point-of-view to blunt an attack. Now comes 3M, under fire last week (April 2) from President Trump who …more

For Those Who Gravitate to Words and Storytelling

    I came across author and illustrator Ella Frances Sanders in 2015 after she published her first book, “Lost in Translation.” She has a gift for marrying words and visuals, like the one above. To probe the “how,” she agreed to an interview which covered topics ranging from Bill Murray and the Yiddish word …more

“Thought Leadership” vs “Thought Followship”

Commenting on an industry issue by itself does not constitute thought leadership. It’s simply a comment on an industry issue. Before going further, I should acknowledge that this remark still has value. If the executive’s comment gains traction in social channels or appears in a publication, that helps to raise the visibility of the company, …more

Words as an Action Film: Ira Glass on Creativity

Who doesn’t like Ira Glass? The man single-handedly popularized the podcast when his NPR show “This American Life” proved that with the right stories, the medium could reach millions. The original premise for “This American Life” was to take an individual who isn’t famous or in the news and build a narrative that captivates listeners. …more

Go-to Songs for Those Who Toil in PR

A few years ago PR Moment asked me to pontificate on a playlist of songs that put a bounce in my step and might — emphasize on the “might” — do the same for others. I decided to play these songs over the weekend during a catchup on loose ends. It turns out that they …more

Living with Language (and Obscure Words)

One’s use of language can change EVERYTHING. Words matter. Which means your choice of words matters. As Exhibit A, consider the seemingly innocuous email wherein the recipient misinterprets guidance as criticism. Capitalizing on the radio voice of Matt Burrows, a member of our Silicon Valley team, we put together an animated video designed to amuse …more

This Is How Many Executives View Anecdotes

Particularly in Silicon Valley where most executives started their careers on the engineering side. Coming from a technical orientation, they tend to think of anecdotes as inconsequential and yes, a bit fluffy. Yet, the science suggests that PR should be sourcing anecdotal content as part of media outreach. We leaned on a couple interns to …more

Storytelling Wisdom from Bestselling Author

I interviewed author Ella Frances Sanders in 2015 after her book “Lost in Translation” had caused quite a sensation and landed on the NY Times bestselling list for four months. I remember thinking how improbable that a single blog post, “11 Untranslatable Words from Other Cultures” could morph into a bestseller. Thanks to over 2 …more