Cision’s “Behind the Headlines”
By Maria Materise
If your brand isn’t getting any media coverage, you’re missing out on opportunities to connect with your audience.
With a strong media relations strategy, you can widen your brand’s reach and expand its audience, says Stan Steinreich, president and CEO of Steinreich Communications.
Stan has extensive experience in getting media coverage for his clients. In this interview, he explains how media relations can help brands gain share of voice, creativity and clear messages will help brands achieve their goals and the Internet helps communication professionals better track their campaigns and see real results.
I understand Steinreich Communications was recently appointed public relations consultant to the Jerusalem Post. What do you have planned for them?
We’re helping them score leading political, business and civic leaders for the forthcoming conference in New York City on May 22. We are also coordinating extensive media coverage with more than 100 journalists who traditionally attend this news-making event.
What do you think was the key factor in the firm winning that account?
Our strength is in working with clients to help them achieve tangible business results through media relations. We also have many people on staff who are former journalists, and we have the former head of Israel’s government press office on our team.
Our extensive experience running media relations for conferences and securing media coverage in both national and regional media outlets is another key component. I think these factors combined made a big difference in terms of their choosing to work with us.
What are some of the biggest PR challenges brands face today?
Cutting through the clutter. We are constantly working with our clients to help them create and implement innovative communications strategies that capture share of mind and voice – and deliver tangible results.
What is the most important lesson you’ve learned about PR throughout your career?
Be a partner to your client. Understand their business objectives and work hard to help them achieve those goals.
What do you like most about working in PR? What do you dislike most?
As a former journalist, I always loved being in the news business. The fast pace, constant changes – no day is the same. That is what I find most compelling about our business.
What I dislike the most is at times the lousy image the public relations industry has with many consumers of information because of dishonesty and “spin” by rogue practitioners.
How has PR changed over the years? What are brands doing differently? What has remained the same?
The biggest change – and ultimately what I believe has propelled the industry to greater heights – is the advent of the Internet and our ability to track results from media placements. Whether engagement on social media or click-throughs on URLs in media coverage, it is so easy to track our great work.
Recently, an Associated Press placement for a client resulted in their selling out of 7,000 units of a piece of jewelry within 90 minutes. Another client saw customer engagement rise 50 percent from a NBC Today show placement and 30 percent from an appearance on The Ellen DeGeneres Show.
Years ago, we could not have been so precise in determining results; today, it is easy.
Brands today have to be more creative and more dynamic than ever to capture greater share of voice. As an industry, we need to be more creative to help them achieve those goals.
What hasn’t changed is the power of the media to drive the message and help clients grow their businesses. The news organizations are different. Everyone today is multi-platform, but the power of the media remains omnipotent.
What advice do you have for brands looking to improve their communication strategy?
The keys to having a successful communication strategy are having clear messages, dynamic creative and a great agency partner that not only provides a strong strategy, but can get the results they need through comprehensive implementation.
Rapid Fire Round
- I always thought I’d be…a journalist. That was my training. While I was privileged to have worked for great media outlets like The New York Times and ABC News, I still feel that when I counsel and represent clients we are still providing the high quality reporting I did back then.
- My favorite social media platform is…Twitter.
- I laugh most at…pranksters and hucksters in our business who sell snake oil to clients. Don’t be fooled. Go with the many quality practitioners out there who will be strong partners and help your business grow.
- The thing that gets me up in the morning is…knowing that we help our clients achieve their goals everyday – and lots and lots of coffee!
- If I was stuck on a desert island, I’d…be looking for a newsstand where I could get my New York Times and Wall Street Journal.
- My biggest pet peeve is…people with a lack of common sense and laziness.