Facing the Dreaded Task of Media List Creation

Creating solid, accurate media lists for pitches (or press releases) is a task that seems to stir up dread in our profession. I’m willing to admit that list building is often the item on my to-do list that gets carried over day after day because it can be so time consuming. The reality is that carefully crafted lists are critical to the success of our pitches—and they’re also a lot of work. It can sometimes seem like a catch-22, but there are ways to help … Read more…

Going (Kind of) Viral

On Sunday, United Airlines became the subject of a tweetstorm after a gate agent denied boarding to two young women because they were wearing leggings and therefore did not meet the dress code requirements for the buddy pass on which they were traveling. Of course, that entirely rational explanation didn’t surface for some time—well after the Twitter-verse, including yours truly, worked itself into a swivet. I figured my tweet about the subject, in which I mused about wearing leggings on my next United flight, would simply … Read more…

Week in Review: Time for Spring Cleaning

I like the idea of spring cleaning and getting the house bright, fresh, and tidy—but actually DOING the spring cleaning? Ugh. I’m running out of ways to procrastinate the inevitable at this point. My to-clean list for this weekend includes window washing and deep cleaning the fridge and the dishwasher, which may be one of the worst tasks. I mean, it’s a dishwasher—it should be self cleaning, right? It’s filled with soap and hot water all the time. But sadly, I have to give mine … Read more…

Quick Hit: Bridging Versus Spinning

When conducting media training, I stress the use of bridging to shift from the question asked to an answer the respondent feels comfortable sharing. I stress that communicators must pair the right bridge with the question asked or it will feel like the speaker is being disingenuous with their response. In other words, it will feel like the speaker is spinning. Well, I just watched a video on Vox that breaks down KellyAnne Conway’s responses to questions, and boy, does my counsel ring true. This … Read more…

Quick Hit: Spring Clean Your AP Style

Spring is officially here! In addition to cleaning your house, there’s also a lot of cleaning PR professionals can do at work, such as cleaning up social media accounts/strategies, updating reporter lists, and reviewing goals and to-do lists. As a writer who has AP style ingrained in her head, I still always need some refreshing and a reminder of the rules, especially after being stuck inside all winter. (I love how they were even able to incorporate spring break.) Here are 10 Tips to Spring … Read more…

Week in Review: Sláinte! Éire go Brách!

Happy St. Patrick’s Day! Even though I know it’s not truly traditional, my family is celebrating by wearing green and whipping up some Irish soda bread to go alongside corned beef, cabbage, and shamrock shakes. (Sorry, not sorry. I can’t convince my brain that Guinness isn’t chocolate milk and I’m disappointed every time.) I did get a chance to celebrate March 17 in Ireland one year, and it was very different from most U.S. celebrations. Except for churches, which were packed, a lot of places … Read more…

Five Things I Learned at My First Job That I Still Use Today

When I graduated from college, my first job was as a production assistant at a television network affiliate in Boston. I worked nights and weekends to help put on a 10 p.m. news program every night. It was a small team, so I really got to learn a lot from the second I walked through the door. Here are five lessons I learned at 22 that I still use today. Deadlines matter! In the newsroom, every day we had a meeting at 3:30 p.m. to … Read more…

Quick Hit: FAFSA Fail

Late last week, the IRS and the Department of Education announced that the data retrieval tool (DRT) on the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) would be unavailable for the foreseeable future, citing security concerns. IRS Data Retrieval Tool will be unavailable for several weeks. Sorry for the inconvenience. pic.twitter.com/7Bblgafkwk — Federal Student Aid (@FAFSA) March 10, 2017 The DRT allows students to easily import tax information to their federal financial aid application form. With that option no longer available, students and their families … Read more…

Week in Review: Say Cheese!

After an initial dairy issue caused by a milk protein intolerance, my girl is growing to be quite a lover a cheese (not surprising, given the cheese intake of my household). Her favorites include extra sharp cheddar, ricotta, and goat cheese (she ate garlic and dill goat cheese last week and she’s definitely a fan). This week, she even tried some Brie—it wasn’t her favorite, but she still went back for more. Not bad for a 16-month old. If the only cheesy thing you’re interested … Read more…

Spring Break: Wooooooo!

With Erin on her grown-up version of spring break, the rest of the TVP Communications team are a little jealous, so we decided to think back to our favorite spring break memories from college. Ali: My favorite spring break was New Orleans, right around Mardi Gras—but it’s not what you think. After three years of visiting my grandparents and taking family trips, I decided to shake things up for my senior year and do the Holy Cross spring break immersion program. I spent a week … Read more…