5 signs I was born for PR

Ruth generated national coverage for Wallace the Llama and the TV show Healing with Animals.

Ruth generated national coverage for Wallace the Llama and the TV show Healing with Animals.

Over coffee each morning, I read newspapers (many of them), I check out my favourite blogs (again many of them) and I check out the blogs that are relevant to clients (also many). I update myself on what is going on in the big picture world, in my world and in the world of each of our clients. Did I mention that I get up early?

I found a somewhat humorous blog on Ragan titled “5 signs you’re not cut out for PR” that was also incredibly accurate, which made it a little frightening. The writer, Scott Signore, nailed it – it’s a good read for anyone thinking they might want to work in this crazy field. And for those of us who love what we do, it reminds us of why we’re here.

So, I took Mr. Signore’s blog post and turned it on its head. Here are “5 signs I was born for PR.”

I am a news hound

It’s 5 a.m. PST, 8 a.m. EST and I am wide-awake, checking out the morning news – looking for opportunities or potential issues for our clients. And this hour, when I get to review the news and send links to my clients, is one of my favourite times of the day.

I see opportunity where others see work

When we identify an opportunity, it’s an “AHA” moment (sorry, I couldn’t help myself). We genuinely get excited about the ability to do more, to add value, to extend or expand the benefit of working with AHA for our clients. We realize it might take more effort on our side, but that’s why our clients rely on us.

Pitching a journalist or blogger and generating coverage makes me do a happy dance

I have to say this extends to writing a speech that resonates with the audience, creating a kickass campaign, developing a communications plan that nails it… seeing coverage that profiles our clients, their products, services or initiatives accurately within the context of an interesting piece of journalism makes me so happy that I dance. And if there’s a photo with it, I add in a twirl.

We’re a team

We work in a collaborative world. We work with journalists to get them what they need. We work with clients to identify their PR objectives and to develop the strategy, tools and tactics – not to mention the content – that engages their stakeholder groups and target markets. We work with other agencies as partners and we work at AHA as a team. I am surrounded by smart, creative, strategic people and I get to collaborate with them on a daily basis. It really doesn’t get much better than that.

We are always looking for ways to do more, to do better, to improve

At AHA, we take the time to look at each campaign, each outreach, each project and ask ourselves – what more can we do? What one additional action could we take that would make it better, that would open that next door, that would increase our client’s return on investment? And we get regular feedback – on proposals, on plans, and on campaigns. We measure, we debrief, we review, we discuss openly and honestly (and respectfully) what we could have done differently, what we learned, and what we need to improve on. Constructive criticism is seen as a positive here at AHA – it might not always be easy to hear, but it’s always worth it.

We get results

At AHA, we work on a range of projects. Some are focused on creating positive change in the world. For some clients, we get to tell their stories in a compelling way; for others, we help improve communication between the organization and key stakeholder groups. Some of the work we do focuses on ensuring that individuals and groups that are experiencing change are given the information they need to manage that process. Other projects involve sharing the benefits of an organization’s products or services with consumers – or as in the case of our travel clients – the reasons to visit a specific destination.

We also get to experience success because a) we generate results, as we’re good at what we do; and b) we measure and report on the effectiveness of the initiative. Results matter and we know that – which is why we’re always measuring, adjusting and reporting back on opportunities or challenges. We like to see success as much as our clients do.

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