Thursday, March 24, 2011

E-mail becomes email - and other recent AP Stylebook changes

On March 18 the AP Stylebook, the style and usage guide for a majority of mainstream media, officially changed E-mail to simply email – finally! I have wanted to type it without a hyphen for years, so in the middle of all the tragedy being reported out of Japan, this was welcomed news!
@apstylebook followers were the first to hear of the news, as the update was initially announced on Twitter. In the new 2011 edition of the AP Stylebook, you'll also notice updates to smartphone and cellphone, both now just one word. These changes come on the heels of  my favorite 2010 update, when it was announced that Web site would evolve to website, also just one word and lowercase!
For all you other grammar geeks like me, be sure to pick up a copy of the 2011 AP Stylebook, which has these new changes along with many others. The spiral-bound writer’s Bible is released each spring, and you will be able to find an online version on the AP Stylebook website in May!

This post was contributed by Shelby Sabin.

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

The "Yes Man" Syndrome

You’ve heard it before…those infamous and seemingly harmless five words: “Yes, that’s a great idea!” When looking for the perfect PR team to boost your company profile and increase brand awareness, it is important to take a step back and evaluate your future (or current) PR partnership.

While every PR agency should serve as a partner, providing client solutions to help move the needle in your business, it is also our role as PR practitioners to let clients know when an idea won’t work and why. Clients always like to hear the magic phrase, “That’s newsworthy and will  generate media interest,” and of course it’s even better when your PR agency achieves that coveted hit in the Wall Street Journal or an appearance on Fox Business News.

However, not every bit of news or idea will produce a media frenzy.  Just like you turn to friends and family to solicit their honest opinion, you should use that same frame of mind when working with a PR agency. We are here to serve not only as a resource and tool to get your news out, but we are also here to provide counsel when something is not newsworthy. 

The PR agency you hire should be a strategic business partner ready to provide creative solutions, packaging your news and turning it into something remarkable.  However, take care to avoid those agencies that take the approach of Jim Carrey in the movie, “Yes Man.” While a can-do attitude is what it takes to get the job done, it also requires a PR team that is willing to speak up when an idea won’t work and instead focusing their attention on how to build upon that idea, turning it into noteworthy news. 

So, whether you’re taking the first step and dipping your toe in the PR waters, or if you have already embarked upon that PR journey, ask yourself what kind of PR agency you are working with. If you are left wondering what your PR agency should like, read this post from PR Daily outlining five types of PR agencies to avoid. That should give you a good starting point!

This post was contributed by Leah Ekmark