Kristen Tischhauser, Co-founder & Managing Partner oftalkTECH, about major trends to follow in 2016: “I believe owned media creation and distribution strategy should be part of your PR plan this year. Creating stellar content and posting it in places like Medium and MOZ, even LinkedIn will take your client to the next level, helping them gain more exposure and cut through the noise.”
While I was in college, I got a taste of a publicist‘s life as I was interning in the PR and Marketing department at a non-profit called Meals On Wheels. It was there where I had to write my first press release on their biggest gala of the year and pitch to journalists along with the PR Director.
After graduation, I jumped into a marketing position at an entertainment production company in Chicago. Four years later, I returned to the PR world and worked my way into a Director position at a boutique lifestyle PR agency. This is where I gained much of my experience in the PR industry.
From there, I moved to Los Angeles and launched talkTECH, a PR company focused on bringing early stage tech startups to market. I learned as much as I could about the tech startup landscape. It was perfect timing since this was right around the time the Los Angeles startup scene was coined “Silicon Beach“. Seven years later, over 100 startups launched, and talkTECH is still going strong!
#once upon a time
I remember the crash of Zirtual, a startup that matches virtual assistants on-demand with busy executives. I was a Zirtual client so I experienced this first hand. Basically, one morning clients and their Zirtual assistants received a vague email saying that the company was shutting down (without any warning) due to financial reasons. All Zirtual assistants were locked out of their emails and that’s when the confusion and media heyday began. Speculations grew while the CEO went dark for a couple days. The problem is that there wasn’t an immediate response from the company when contacted by media or clients (for at least a couple days), no sign of a PR team to manage media inquiries, and no damage control plan that was ready to combat these speculations.
I would have to say our PR Campaign for SkyBell (formerly known as iDoorCam), a wifi-enabled doorbell that allows you to see, hear, and speak to the visitor at your door through your smartphone. The startup‘s goal was to gain exposure for its Indiegogo campaign and help them reach their goal amount of $100k through gaining awareness with media coverage.
The end result? We garnered over 100 top/mid tier media placements throughout their campaign. SkyBell reached their goal of $100k in just seven days and ended their campaign with $602,488 total raised in 60 days.
After the Paris attacks this year, Airbnb contacted all hosts in Paris asking if they could take in those stranded in the city. Airbnb issued a media alert stating that they will waive all service fees and provide a simple way for hosts to offer their lodgings for free via itsDisaster Response platform. Airbnb provided shelter efficiently, opening doors that may not have been before their services existed. These types of stories remind us of the importance of innovation and technology and how startups have the ability to change the world, especially in a time of emergency.
I believe creativity is a neccessary trait if you’re in the PR industry. I put on my creative hat on a daily basis when working on client strategy and pitching angles.
My definition of innovation is an implementation of change that has a significant impact on the world. As a publicist, it is key to work with clients who are innovative – this helps craft a newsworthy story.
1 – Hootsuite: I use this social media management tool to schedule tweets on behalf of my company, seed out media placements and reach out to journalists on occasion. It’s great because you can see all of your Twitter and Facebook activity on one dashboard.
2 – Muckrack Pro: This platform helps publicists pitch stories to the right journalists and allows for you to monitor what’s being said about your client on social media.
3 – Rapportive: This plug-in allows you to see a brief overview of the person you’re emailing, right inside your inbox. For example, you can see their location, job title, company and LinkedIn.
4 – Google Docs: I’ve been using this simple tool for years. Google Docs allows you to share and edit docs in real-time with clients.
5 – Instagram: Who doesn’t like seeing a stream of beautiful and interesting photos? I hate to admit it but I catch myself on this app on a daily basis!
I practice Vinyasa yoga and meditation on a daily basis. Throughout the years of running my company as if I was a startup, the burnout and stress was taking its toll on me. I learned to take a step back, regain balance and take care of myself both mentally and physically. This helps me perform better at work and I’m happier J
I believe owned media creation and distribution strategy should be part of your PR plan this year. Creating stellar content and posting it in places like Medium and MOZ , even LinkedIn will take your client to the next level, helping them gain more exposure and cut through the noise.
Also, PR measurement tools will be big this year. ROI tools like AirPR’s technology, will help publicists and companies measure PR efforts and impact.