On Our Radars and In Our Readers: Week of October 2

Whether for the government, a cause or  yourself, marketing in all forms is bubbling up in conversation this week.  Here’s the latest:

Thanks again to Gennifer Delman — virtual intern/future magazine editor/head of Hofstra’s Ed2010 chapter — for compiling the top PR/marketing news of the week!

See any other headlines/trends you want to share?  Post it in the comments or send it to us at BestPublicist (at) gmail (dot) com.

News To Us: On Our Radar and In Our Readers

They say, “Knowledge is power,” and that’s why we’re so thankful that (in addition trolling of our Google Reader regularly) we now have the fabulous Gennifer Delman — virtual intern/future magazine editor/head of Hofstra’s Ed2010 chapter — helping us identify the top PR/Marketing stories to share on a weekly basis.  Here’s the first of what we hope will be many installments.

See any other headlines/trends you want to share?  Post it in the comments or send it to us at BestPublicist (at) gmail (dot) com.


What Happens When Buzz-Building Backfires

It was a huge step for a company that had started less than three years ago and has grown into one of the most successful social shopping sites around: Groupon was launching its first-ever ad campaign on the most-watched television day of the year — Super Bowl Sunday.

Unfortunately, while designed to be comical, their commercials offended many and ultimately were pulled off the air less than a week later. The campaign, created by ad agency Crispin Porter & Bogusky, aimed to build buzz. And it did — just not the kind they had wanted.

What happens when your attempt to create attention backfires and how should you deal with it? Whether you flubbed a major presentation (hello, Christina Aguilera!), got the green light for an expensive project that fell flat, or you made an off-color comment in a meeting, there are lessons to be learned from the Groupon situation that you can apply to your own career missteps:

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Learning from Lindsay: Lessons To Glean From The Actress’ Missteps and Mistakes

News came this morning that Hollywood actress Lindsay Lohan will be charged this afternoon with felony grand theft for allegedly stealing a $2,500 necklace.

Whether or not she’s convicted for this incident (or others stemming from the allegations from her melee while at the Betty Ford Clinic), there’s no doubt that the starlet is guilty as charged when it comes to damage to her reputation and, subsequently, her career.    While she’s an extreme case, there’s still a lot that one can all learn from Lindsay and her significant fall from grace:
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For Crying Out Loud (AKA Showing Emotion At Work)

This past week, NBC’s Today Show featured a segment about John Boehner, the future Speaker of the House, and his tendency to cry over spilled milk…and legislation…and kids on a playground at school.  Then, on the Tonight Show, comedian Jack Black shared a song he had written for his two young boys letting them know that it’s okay to cry.

The long held belief that trotting out emotion at work is a big “no-no” may be (slowly) changing; it has become increasingly more common for public figures to whip out a hanky at the drop of a hat. But, congressmen and celebrities notwithstanding: In most cases, we still recommend keeping your emotions at bay while at work.
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Welcome to our blog!  We’re Jessica Kleiman and Meryl Weinsaft Cooper, longtime friends, PR professionals and now co-authors of Be Your Own Best Publicist: How to Get Noticed, Hired & Rewarded at Work, which hits bookstores on Jan. 20, 2011 (you can pre-order on Amazon.com now).

A few years ago, we started talking about writing a career guide aimed at the young people we manage and their fellow “Millennials,” many of whom could use some help navigating the business landscape and learning that it takes dedication, hard work and patience to get ahead (in other words, they may not land their boss’ job in six months).  When we discussed the idea with our literary agent, he said that while he liked it, there were lots of Gen Y experts out there already writing books and doling out advice to this group.  He asked, “What makes you qualified to write a career guide?  What do you have that make you the only ones who can write this book?”

So with that, we went back to the drawing board and realized that the skills we had honed in our collective 30-plus years in public relations could easily translate to anyone trying to promote themselves in the workplace, whether right out of college or re-entering the work force after having kids, trying to start a company or move up in the one where you already work.

Once we had the idea, we banged out a proposal in six weeks and about four months later, we had a book deal.  The result, Be Your Own Best Publicist, will be out in January and we hope that the advice, expertise, anecdotes and exercises in its pages will help lots of people learn how to create a personal brand, develop a communications strategy and connect with others who can help them, whether in person or through social media.

Through this blog, our Twitter feed (@bestpublicist), Facebook page and speaking engagements, we hope to offer tips, tricks and wisdom (both ours and others’) on how to stand out from the competition using creativity, networking skills, key messages and a healthy dose of confidence.  We invite your comments, ideas and personal success stories.