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The Public Relations Blog

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Heather M. Hilliard

Heather M. Hilliard

Heather M. Hilliard is a marketing and strategic planning professional with expertise in crisis management communications. Earning two master’s degrees and her international Certified Emergency Manager credential, she has worked during disasters as well as “normal business” to offset impact in preparedness for large- and small-scale events in a variety of industries. She is an adjunct professor for Tulane University. Heather has worked for Axia Public Relations since December 2015.

Read Heather's recent blog posts below.

Recent Posts:

7 tactics for guerrilla campaigns

PR strategies to keep you on top

Getting your message right is only part of what helps you succeed. Delivery, placement, positioning – it all feeds the hunger of the consumer for your product. Refresh your memory about the nuances of good guerrillas. Then, here are seven points on the checklist for you to consider while designing your next great guerrilla campaign.

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Topics: public relations

Use guerrilla marketing to increase your ROI

Make your message stand out in the crowd

Successful guerrilla marketing puts the focus on the public using unique placement and atypical techniques. By employing one of the five types of guerrilla marketing to gain attention and visibility, your business can stand out from the crush of companies on the market. Selecting the right tactic for your campaign is an important step because there are good and bad outcomes tied to each.

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Topics: public relations, shared media

Are you prepared for a PR crisis?

A checklist before worst-case events so you perform well in any incident

One of the ways that first responders prepare is to practice. Police, fire and emergency medical personnel prepare themselves for certain situations so that good habits are strengthened and surprises don’t negatively impact their refined skills.

You can prepare too, with public relations. Composing statements on issues that concern risk management in your industry (or things that have happened previously – to you or your competition) means you don’t have to think about everything on your feet.

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Topics: public relations, crisis communications

Is this thing on? Media relations and "Off the record"

Why nothing said is “off the record" and how PR can improve your media relations

Most people have witnessed a moment in a live television broadcast when someone on camera blurts out something inappropriate or controversial. Or, a company spokesperson is quoted in a newspaper saying something unsavory or offensive and his response is that he thought it was “off the record.” When these moments occur, the audience cringes and thinks why would someone say that? The reason this happens is typically because the speaker thinks the camera isn’t recording or that the conversation is confidential. But what causes a person to lose focus in this way? How can you avoid having this happen to you?

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Topics: public relations, media, spokesperson training

Gorillas in the midst of your marketing

How creative public relations that attacks the mainstream cacophony helps your business

Early in the 19th century during the Peninsular War, when Spain was resisting Napoleon, the term “guerra” (Spanish for war) evolved to “guerrilla” to describe the way the Spanish were fighting against Napoleon’s empire. The fighters against the mainstream were rebels, radicals and revolutionaries. This small independent group used irregular means to fight against larger regular forces.

In the 1980s, the phraseology “guerrilla marketing” evolved from the historical corps of special fighters who succeeded in going up against the establishment. Gearing the strategies that worked in the Pyrenees as well as the jungles of Latin America, businesses (using little cash or other resources) could attack the big companies in similar non-traditional ways, on non-traditional battlefields.

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Topics: public relations, media

How to effectively communicate through a crisis

PR communications in a crisis must be handled with empathy and sensitivity

Given the reality of 24-hour news, both large and small events receive intense scrutiny during a crisis. The larger networks, in an effort to cater to the American public, will switch to real-time events. Any type of news – good or bad – can become top billing in today’s news cycle. Stock market gains, job market changes or violent crises all can take the main stage for viewership.

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Topics: public relations, crisis communications, shared media

Back to school for crisis management

How to use a PR nightmare to help you improve your bottom line

The country’s current social climate is an opportunity for better public relations between PR firms and their clients. One of the best examples arose recently at the University of Missouri, and smart companies are paying attention and making changes.

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Topics: public relations, crisis communications, shared media

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