The Public Relations Blog

Dark sites: What are they?

Understanding an important tool for crisis management

Experienced PR firms that are skilled in crisis communications work closely with their clients to build “dark sites” (aka blind sites, black sites or ghost sites). Dark sites are fully functional, pre-packaged web pages prepared for immediate publishing in the event of a crisis. Dark sites are so named because they reside in a different layer of the Internet than the layer most of us typically use, and their main purpose is to communicate accurate and timely information, given the immediacy of viral social media.

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Topics: Public Relations, Featured, Crisis PR, Social Media

How engineering firms can benefit from PR

Use PR to solve problems, build your customer base and achieve results

Engineering firms today face a challenging marketplace. In order to stay ahead of the competition, you need to increase your visibility, prove that you add value and differentiate yourself as an industry leader. Help from PR can make these vital tasks easier.

To engage clients, handle crises and communicate effectively with target audiences, every kind of business requires assistance from experts who excel in these areas.

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Topics: Public Relations, Featured, Social Media, Reputation Management, crisis communications, Branding

Protecting your CEO’s reputation

Why you should let PR manage this crucial task

Your CEO guides the company’s strategic vision, leads the team and decides where the money will go. Whether the company thrives or goes down in flames is often her responsibility. She also serves as the public face of your organization. With so much riding on her shoulders, it’s critical to protect the reputation of your CEO.

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Topics: Public Relations, Featured, Reputation Management, Online Public Relations

What your company can learn from the media troubles of Ben Carson

Before your next public event or speech, consult with PR

Dr. Ben Carson is widely considered to be one of the more likeable and honest of the Republican candidates running for president. Nonetheless, his ride has not been completely smooth. The media is now accusing him of lying and exaggerating his credentials.

This kind of allegation is damaging, whether you’re a candidate for the country’s top job or CEO of a corporation. Using PR tools and tactics can help get you out of this type of crisis, but only if they are done correctly.

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Topics: Public Relations, Featured, Crisis PR, Media

How to promote your charitable giving

Let PR show you how to help your company while helping others

You have done a good job of fostering a company culture that encourages and celebrates charitable giving. Of course, you did not do this just to receive recognition, but it would be nice to get some anyway. The trick is to promote your corporate social responsibility efforts without sounding like a showoff and possibly alienating customers. With help from PR, you can reap both the internal and external benefits of your charitable giving efforts.

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Topics: Public Relations, Featured, Social Media, Media

3 ways you can manage PR like McDonald’s

Ways to use PR to grow your company

McDonald’s is one of the largest chains of fast food restaurants in the world. Founder Ray Kroc had the idea to create McDonald’s in 1954 when he visited a San Bernardino, Calif. restaurant. A year later, Kroc started the popular fast food chain and it only required three years for McDonald’s to sell its 100 millionth hamburger. Today, the company has about 35,000 restaurants worldwide in 119 countries, serving about 68 million guests per day. How did it get so successful? A well-managed PR strategy.

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Topics: Public Relations, Featured, Media, Franchisors

Reflecting on Paris: Social media best practices during tragedy

Late Friday night, when gunfire and blasts took the lives of at least 128 people in Paris, the world turned to social media for updates on the tumultuous situation. Among the tweets of condolence, sadness and worry, there was the occasional corporate tweet about products, the sporadic blogger pushing his posts and some of the usual whimsical content you find on Twitter.

While social media is a fun way to connect with consumers and prospects, it’s also a source for news and community-building during times of tragedy.

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Topics: Public Relations, Featured, Crisis PR, Social Media

You’ve put your foot in your mouth. Now what?

How Turing Pharmaceuticals’ Martin Shkreli and others can climb out of a PR nightmare

Imagine this: A crisis is brewing over your company’s perceived lack of compassion for your customers. To make things worse, a top executive is quoted in major media outlets saying that the company will do little (or nothing) to change.

You don’t need to imagine it; you can read all about it in the news coverage of Turing Pharmaceuticals’ CEO, Martin Shkreli, who decided to drastically increase the cost of a life-saving drug from $18 to $750 a pill. However, there are ways for this company – and others in a similar situation – to recover from such a fiasco with help from PR.

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Topics: Public Relations, Featured, Crisis PR, Social Media

How to stay ethical on social media

We live according to our own moral standards and beliefs and we run businesses in the way we believe is ethical and appropriate. Unethical business practices can not only damage your business reputation, but can also completely ruin the business itself. When it comes to dealing with your public either in person or on social media, it’s important to know which behaviors are ethical and which are not.

Of course, ethical norms vary from business to business and from culture to culture, but some are more or less standard for most business practices.

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Topics: Public Relations, Featured, Social Media, Media

The power of a pitch

The journalists you pitch a story to matter more than you may think

A PR industry pro recently shared in PRWeek that it is better to focus pitching efforts on local media with the hope that other outlets will subsequently pick up the story. While local efforts are a great start, it isn’t always the most efficient way to pitch a client or a story.

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Topics: Public Relations, Featured, Media