How PR Can Help Mend Your Broken Reputation

How PR Can Help Mend Your Broken Reputation

I’m happy to report that the Internet remains one of the most powerful tools around for helping you build your brand, whether your goal is to promote yourself, your business or both. I’m not so happy to report that there’s a downside. Unfortunately, the Internet is also a tool that your detractors can wield to tear down your reputation and sully your brand. Dissatisfied customers, sneaky competitors and anyone else with a keyboard can post critical reviews and maybe even outright fabrications about you, and their words could show up when people start searching you out in the online world. This is also true if you made some regrettable mistake that was significant enough to become media fodder. That may show up, too, much to your reputation’s detriment. That’s the bad news. The good news is there are steps you can take to repair your online reputation, though admittedly this can sometimes be a long-term endeavor. Let’s explore some of the possibilities: Secure media coverage. One way to fight bad publicity on the Internet is to counter it with good publicity. If the news media publish articles or broadcast interviews that put you in a good light, the negativity can be pushed down in the results people see when they Google your name. So pitch yourself to the media, offering to speak on your area of expertise. For example, if you’re a financial professional, you could talk about ways people can plan for a more stable retirement. If you’re a nutritionist, you could discuss dieting tips. Let the media know you are at the ready to provide useful information...
Don’t Be Bashful! Self-Promotion Is Essential For Building Your Brand

Don’t Be Bashful! Self-Promotion Is Essential For Building Your Brand

We’ve probably all been at social gatherings where one person monopolizes the conversation and drones on endlessly about his or her extraordinary achievements and experiences. By evening’s end, you walk away shaking your head and thinking to yourself, “What a shameless self-promoter. I hope I’m never like that!” And you certainly shouldn’t be! Not in that manner anyway! But whether you’re a small business owner, a professional, a CEO or an author, you do need to promote yourself, no matter how uncomfortable the “bragging” might make you feel. While you don’t want to come across like the boasting uncle who claims to have done everything first and better, you do need to overcome any shyness or reluctance that keeps you from letting the world know about what you have to offer. So let’s take a look at some steps that can help you promote yourself – without coming across as an egotistical windbag in the process! Acknowledge that self-promotion is necessary. Like it or not, brand awareness – whether it’s a personal or company brand – is essential for success in today’s marketplace. If you look around you’ll see that even people with well-established personal brands continue to promote themselves. Elon Musk, for example, keeps an active Twitter account. So do horror novelist Stephen King and former astronaut and recent book author Buzz Aldrin. Each of these people has a name that you wouldn’t think needs any more promoting. And yet they and others just as famous keep right on promoting. You should, too. To get some ideas for how to go about that, research the opinion leaders in...
Identify The Unique Message That Will Help You Promote Your Brand

Identify The Unique Message That Will Help You Promote Your Brand

Each day journalists and radio and TV talk-show hosts need someone to talk to. In fact, they need many someones. Maybe they want a source who can explain why the stock market just crashed. Maybe they are in search of a guest for a TV talk show that specializes in lifestyle topics or a radio show that emphasizes health issues. On any given day they could want any number of people on any number of topics. And that’s where you come in because if you position yourself correctly, you could be one of those people the media go to when they need expert commentary on breaking news or on the latest trends. Of course, there’s also plenty of competition for that media attention! Why should they choose you over all those other folks?  Clearly, you need to separate yourself from the pack and to do that you’ll need to figure out what’s unique about you and your message, and then let the media and the world at large know about you. How do you accomplish that? Here are a few steps you can take to get members of the media to turn their attention your way: Focus on what you’re passionate about. You no doubt work 40, 50 or 60 hours a week. Maybe even more! Even if you love what you do, I’ll bet you’re not passionate about everything you do every minute of every day. So examine your typical day’s routine and figure out what it is that really gets your juices flowing. What revs up your enthusiasm? If you home in on what you’re really passionate...
Blazing A Trail Of Publicity Until The Paparazzi Get Here

Blazing A Trail Of Publicity Until The Paparazzi Get Here

We all love to dream big, so I guess it’s no surprise that at EMSI we occasionally speak with people who expect to leapfrog over what they consider the “lesser” media and land a spot in the chair next to Ellen or be quoted in the New York Times. My husband and business partner, Steve, who has a great sense of humor, sometimes gets in a teasing mood when he is on the phone with potential clients who express this sort of ambition. He tells them to get up and go to the window. They are rightfully puzzled and ask why they should do that. “Just go look out the window,” he repeats. Being good sports, they comply. When they return to the phone, Steve playfully asks, “Did you see any paparazzi out there?” The message, delivered with a bit of lightheartedness, is clear: For most of us, the media is not hovering at the doorstep, ready to cling to every word we say. Certainly, the point is not to dash anyone’s dreams of hitting the big time with publicity (I’ll cheer enthusiastically if you do), but you have to be realistic. Before you have a reasonable shot at getting Ellen DeGeneres or the New York Times or anyone else of that caliber to even consider you, you need to build credibility and give them a reason to want to interview you. Top-tier publications and national TV talk shows prefer sources and guests with a track record. If they Google you and find nothing more than your LinkedIn and Facebook pages, they likely will move on. If, however, they...
If They Can Attract The National Media Spotlight, So Can You!

If They Can Attract The National Media Spotlight, So Can You!

One of my favorite moments each day comes during our morning meeting at EMSI when my team shares some of the success stories we’ve had landing our clients appearances in print, on TV and on radio, or building their brand on social media. And recently, we’ve had some really great “hits” for our clients. One will be appearing on “The Dr. Oz Show” and two others were featured on “Daytime,” the nationally syndicated lifestyle talk show. Clients also were quoted or featured in such top-tier publications as USA Today and Essence magazine, just to give you a couple of more examples. I share this not so much to brag (although I can’t help but be proud of these accomplishments), but because I think there’s a lesson in here for those who don’t believe the media would be interested in them. Consider this: Our clients come to us from all walks of life. They are corporate executives, book authors, financial planners, educators, scientists, doctors, attorneys and nutritionists, just to name a few. They are experts in their fields, and possibly known within certain circles, but they are not household names. In other words, they are men and women just like you – with the exception that they are being quoted and interviewed by the nation’s top media. So how do we land them these great opportunities to promote and build their brands? One way is that we follow the news, keeping up to date on the latest trends or issues facing the nation and the world. That way we can let journalists or talk show hosts know that we have...
Make Your Passion Part Of Your Personal Branding Effort

Make Your Passion Part Of Your Personal Branding Effort

Recently, I was chatting with a new client, and hearing his remarkable story reminded me of how we often separate our professional branding efforts from our true passions. And that may not be the best way to go. This particular client spent much of his career working with a famous athlete. That might be interesting on its own merits, but what he learned about himself along the way is that he had knowledge and experience he could share with young people to inspire them and affect their lives in a positive way. Now he’s focused on that. I think what he discovered is true for many of us. We have careers we work at every day – and with any luck we are passionate about those careers – but we also have passions outside work that help shape who we are. Maybe it’s helping disadvantaged young people. Maybe it’s volunteering with an animal-rescue group. Maybe it’s traveling on mission trips. Sometimes we don’t get to focus on those passions as much as we would like. As another client notes, we tend to put the things we consider really important on the back burner while we get caught up in day-to-day living. Or, as John Lennon wrote in one of his songs, “Life is what happens to you while you’re busy making other plans.” But I don’t think it has to be that way. Both your profession and your passion can be part of your everyday living and part of your brand. The two aren’t necessarily mutually exclusive, even though we often separate them. Let me offer a few things...