The eight page weekly is the only PR newsletter on LEXIS/NEXIS.
Edition, March 18, 2009, Page 1
WORTH ACCOUNT OUT FOR BIDS
Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport has begun an open
review of its PR account with an RFP process running through
seven-runway airport, which is among the top five in the
U.S. for traffic, has worked with Burson-Marsteller since
it won a 52-firm review in 2005.
which works with local subcontractors Ware & Associates
and ATS, was granted a $220K extension this month to handle
the account through July, when the winning firm would take
over (or continue).
PR contract, expected to be for a three-year term with two
additional option years, will be under the direction of
Ken Capps, VP/public affairs, and covers national media
relations, PR, community outreach and events. Prior to B-M,
the airport worked with Ackerman PR for two years after
are due by April 6, but a conference for prospective bidders
will be held March 18.
RFP has been posted on the airports website.
B-Ms FRANCIS JOINS STEELE
Trevor Francis, managing
director in Burson-Marstellers media practice, is
joining the Republican National Committee as communications
director for its embattled chairman Michael Steele.
The Richmond-based Francis
served as press secretary for former Commerce Dept. chief
Donald Evans. He also worked in the State Dept.s communications
shop and was deputy director for the inauguration of Bush/Cheney.
Steele, who was elected
RNC head six weeks ago, has had a shaky start, highlighted
by a high-profile squabble with Rush Limbaugh and fallout
from an interview with GQ magazine in which he appeared
at odds with the Republican Partys position on abortion
and gay rights.
Steele apologized to Limbaugh
and released a statement March 12 to say he is and always
has been pro-life.
DEUTSCHE BANK SAYS SELL OMC
Deutsche Bank has put
a sell rating on Omnicom Groups stock,
downgrading shares from hold. Analyst Matt Chelser
also cut OMCs price target to $19 from $26.
Chesler made the downgrade
though he admits there is no sign that client spending has
tapered off at OMC as it had in previous economic slumps.
He does anticipate that downward pressure from clients
on fees will become intense.
OMC CEO John Wren has
announced plans to cut about five percent of staffers.
WALMART REVIEWS PR
Walmart U.S. is in the
midst of an RFP process to review its PR account.
Edelman has worked with
the retailer since 2005, when it edged APCO Worldwide and
DCI Group in a review process.
The retailer said it has
identified candidates for the account and that Edelman is
in the mix.
Tara Raddohl, senior communications
manager, Walmart PR & brand reputation, told ODwyers:
Walmart is currently talking to a number of public
relations agencies to support consumer communications for
Walmart U.S. Candidate agencies that may join the roster
have already been identified and vetted. The incumbent agency,
Edelman, Chicago, is participating in the search.
Leslie Dach, former vice
chairman of Edelman, is Walmarts VP of corporate affairs
and government relations. Select Resources International,
Santa Monica, Calif., is handling the agency search.
NOVELLI EXITS AARP
Bill Novelli, of Porter
Novelli fame, is leaving his CEO post at AARP on April 6.
He will be replaced by Barry Rand, who will become the first
African-American chief of the senior citizens lobbying group.
Novelli assumed the AARP
slot eight years ago after he left the presidency of the
Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids. He is joining the faculty
at Georgetown Universitys McDonough School of Business.
Rand worked at Xerox for
more than 30 years. He left the copier company to helm Avis,
which made him the first black to head a Fortune 500 company.
Rand retired as CEO of Equitant Corp. in `05. He serves
as chairman of Howard Universitys board of trustees.
AARP calls itself the
definitive voice for people over the age of
50. It has 40M members and claims its AARP The Magazine
is the worlds largest circulation mag with 34.5M readers.
PINCUS CHIDES RANKING NO-SHOWS
The 50 PR firms
that skipped the 2008 ODwyer rankings (3/11/09 NL)
missed a chance to show consistency in financial
reporting, said IR vet Ted Pincus, who called it a sudden
case of lockjaw.
He said the firms
violated a basic principle of financial reportingconsistency.
The current economic
downturn is an acid test of whether people can sustain
not only their solvency but their principles when the chips
are down, he said.
on page 7)
Edition, March 18, 2009, Page 2
PULLS PLUG ON IRAQ PR RFP
Army has pulled the plug on a bid to hire private contractors
to bolster its public affairs operation in northern Iraq
and the U.S. in support of the 25th Infantry Divisions
public affairs team.
Multinational Division-North, based in Tikrit, had been
searching for three civilian PR specialists and two Arabic-speaking
media monitors to work in Iraq and two staffers stateside.
statement issued March 11 said the government no longer
has a requirement for this service.
RFP issued in February was extended twice with the last
deadline for proposals set as March 15.
Washington, D.C.-based Lincoln Group has worked alongside
military PAOs in Iraq since early in the U.S. invasion,
which began in 2003.
Iraq-based team called for in the solicitation would have
handled day-to-day PA support, local Iraqi and international
media monitoring and outreach to Iraqi media. The U.S. team
was needed to pitch hometown, regional and national U.S.
media, including a troop blog and maintenance
of an interactive website.
25th Infantry, known as the Tropical Lightning Division
for its base in Hawaii, took over control of the northern
command in December after previously serving there for 15
months from 2006-07.
PB REPS AFGHANISTAN LOBBY
Patton Boggs has picked
up the Campaign for U.S.-Afghanistan Partnership, which
is run out of McLean, Va., according to the lobbying firms
The goal is to advocate
a stronger U.S. role in Afghanistan and to strengthen the
The Campaigns headquarters
has an unlisted phone number. Its website is in the works.
A notice promises information is coming soon. It says CUSAP
is committed to achieving sustainable security and
prosperity in Afghanistan.
PBs Nick Allard
and Robert Kapla represent CUSAP. Allard is a former aide
to Sen. Ted Kennedy and the late Pat Moynihan. Kapla is
a White House and Justice Dept. veteran.
PEPPERCOM ASSISTS MAYTAG REPAIRMAN
Peppercom is helping Maytag
as the Whirlpool unit has recalled 1.6M refrigerators that
may represent a fire hazard.
The recall includes fridges
sold from 2001 to 04 branded as Maytag, Magic Chef,
Admiral, Jenn-Air, Crosley and Amana.
Deborah Brown, managing
director at Peppercom, said her firm is providing
ongoing media support during the recall process.
The New York-based independent
shop is working together with the Maytag and Whirlpool
corporate communications teams to ensure all media communications
are disseminated and addressed in a timely manner,
according to Brown.
The refrigerators, according
to the recall notice, contain a faulty relay component that
may cause the compressor to overheat and thus cause a fire.
There have been 41 reported ignition episodes that caused
smoke or fire damage.
WPP FOLDS BROUILLARD
WPP Group is folding its
36-year-old Brouillard Communications unit into Brand Union,
a branding outfit.
Simon Bolton, CEO of BU,
told the Wall Street Journal his shop is strong overseas
but lacks a robust presence here. He hopes the BU absorption
of BC will remedy that situation. BU has 23 offices throughout
the world and annual revenues in the $80M range.
Brouillard has worked
for Bear Stearns, Pennzoil, Morgan Stanley, Salvation Army,
Goldman Sachs and Lexus.
Its website describes
CEO Rob Scalea as a grand strategist along the
lines of Alexander the Great, George Washington and Bobby
Fischer. He becomes head of Brand Union North America.
Bolton isnt clear
how many jobs will be lost with the cut in overlapping services.
The Journal calls the disappearance of Brouillard the latest
phase in the slimming down beginning on Madison Ave.
RED CROSS BOLSTERS COMMS.
Roger Lowe, senior VP
for APCO Worldwide, has left the firm for the senior VP/communications
slot at the American Red Cross in Washington.
Lowe, who started work
March 10, was at APCO for five years following a four-year
stint directing public affairs in Porter Novellis
The Red Cross said Lowe
will focus on expanding its web and social media presence.
Lowe was in journalism
for 21 years covering politics, government, the U.S. Supreme
Court, including a stint as Washington bureau chief for
the Columbus Dispatch. He handled U.S. Chamber of
Commerce and the Business Roundtable to Catholic Charities
USA while at APCO.
Suzanne DeFrancis, another
Porter Novelli/D.C. alum, joined the Red Cross in 07
as its chief public affairs officer.
CALIF. TRANSIT NEEDS BRAND
The Alameda-Contra Costa
Transit District, Californias No. 3 public bus system,
is looking for proposals covering its brand development
The District serves 67M
passengers a year and seven East Bay cities, including Oakland,
Berkeley and San Leandro. It plans a serious of enhancements
to improve service by `14. That includes more rail-like
boarding, off-board fare collection and bus-only transit
The District wants a firm
to create an identity for the improved services,
consisting of a name, logo, color scheme, positioning, vehicle
decaling, and shelter design, according to its RFP. The
selected name of the service must be translatable into Spanish,
Korean, Vietnamese and Cantonese.
Phase One of the work
(focus groups) begins in July and runs 18 months through
the following December. The full-blown marketing effort
kicks off in 2012. Proposals are due April 7.
Sharon Dennis, contract
specialist at AC Transits purchasing department, has
info at 510/577-8897 and [email protected].
Edition, March 18, 2009, Page 3
KILLS BEST LIFE
will kill Best Life after the May issue hits the newsstands
next month because the Mens Health spin-off failed
to meet the publisher's internal benchmarks,
said Steven Murphy, CEO, in announcing the decision to end
the five-year-old magazine.
cited the challenging advertising market and the overall
sour economy as reasons for the shut-down.
had a circulation of 550K and was led by editor-in-chief
Stephen Perrine and publisher Michael Wolfe. Murphy called
the duo outstanding leaders and ambassadors for the
also publishes Prevention, Runners World,
Womens Health, Organic Gardening and
NEWS CORP. BUYS BROOKLYN
News Corp. has purchased
The Brooklyn Paper, the 31-year-old paper with a
circulation in the 50,000 range.
TBP covers neighborhoods
such as Brooklyn Heights, Dumbo, Cobble Hill, Carroll Gardens,
Williamsburg, Park Slope and Bay Ridge.
It is owned by Ed Weintrob
and published by his wife, Celia. Editor Gersh Kuntzman
used to cover the borough for News Corp.s New York
News Corp. bought TBP
competitor, Courier-Life, in '06. The TBP staff will move
into C-L's headquarters in the Metro Tech complex this week.
MCCLATCHY ORDERS CUTS
McClatchy Co. said March
9 that it would cut another 1,600 positions, or 15 percent
of its workforce, and order wage cuts as part of plans to
slash $110M in spending in 2009 at its 30 newspapers.
The Kansas City Star,
a McClatchy paper, said a workforce cut of 15 percent is
likely, translating to about 150 positions, according to
publisher Mark Zieman.
Another paper, the Modesto
Bee said it is cutting 11 staffers after a union vote,
and wages will be cut up to 10 percent for Bee staffers.
Furloughs are also being discussed, the paper reported.
McClatchy expects the moves to cost $30M in severance. The
cuts will begin by the end of the first quarter of '09.
Gary Pruitt, chairman
and CEO who declined '08 and '09 bonuses, also said he'll
be reducing his salary by 14 percent. Other top execs will
see a 10 percent cut and no bonuses for the year, according
to a statement.
Also, company directors
have seen their fees reduced 13 percent and stock awards
were cut for '08 and '09.
We have been transitioning
steadily from a traditional newspaper company to a hybrid
print and online, news and advertising company for some
time, Pruitt said in the statement.
The effects of the
current national economic downturn make it essential that
we move even faster to realign our workforce and make our
operations more efficient. We previously discussed a plan
to reach a targeted level of cost savings, but given the
worsening economy, we must do more, he added.
Pruitt said while
painful, we know these actions are working as evidenced
by expense drops of 11.5 percent for 08 and more than
14 percent in Q4.
HEARST WRANGLES CONCESSIONS
The San Francisco Chronicle
and its biggest union have agreed to cuts in an effort to
fend off the shutdown of the Hearst Corp. property.
Hearst, last month, threatened
to close the 144-year-old paper within "weeks"
if concessions were not reached.
The California Media Workers
Guild says the new agreement with Chronicle management allows
for layoffs without regard to seniority. The Guild expects
at least 150 of its 483 reporters, advertising, circulation
and production staffers will be let go.
The Guild also okayed
reduced vacation time/sick leave, expansion of the work
week from 37.5 to 40 hours and expanded use of outside contractors.
Frank Vega, publisher
of the Chron, is now targeting a Teamsters local for cuts
to "ensure the newspapers survival," according
to his statement.
Hearst says the Chron
lost $50M in `08. Its circulation is pegged at 340K.
MIAMI HERALD TRIMS STAFF
The Miami Herald
is cutting 175 staffers and eliminating 30 vacant jobs in
an effort to fight the advertising slump.
occur in all areas of our operation and at every level in
the organization, said publisher David Landsberg in
an e-mail to staffers.
The cutbacks affect 19
percent of the McClatchy Co.-owned paper.
Remaining staffers get
salary cuts and mandatory one-week unpaid furloughs.
Landsberg said he has done everything possible to minimize
the impact of layoffs by identifying alternative means of
The paper, for instance,
is reducing the width of its news pages and shuttering its
NY TIMES CO. COMPLETES SALE/LEASBACK
The New York Times Co.
has completed its sale/leaseback deal with investment firm
W.P. Carey & Co., a transaction covering the paper's
new headquarters building. The deal is worth $225M.
The transaction covers
21 floors of the 52-story building that is located across
from New York City's Port Authority bus depot.
The lease deal is for
15 years. The NYTC has the option to repurchase its condo
interest for $250M in ten years. The initial rent is $24M.
That will escalate over terms of the sale/leaseback.
BAXTER GUIDES DIGITAL FOR
Alex Baxter, executive
director of digital media for Wenner Media, has moved to
Parade as GM of its online endeavors.
Baxter headed Internet,
mobile, video and other interactive services for Rolling
Stone, Us Weekly and Men's Journal at
He was formerly director
of Internet sales and marketing at Dow Jones & Co.
news continued on next page)
Edition, March 18, 2009, Page 4
N.Y. POSTS KEIL DIES
Braden Keil, who penned
the New York Posts Gimme Shelter
real estate column died from cancer on March 10. He was
Col Allan, editor-in-chief
of the Post, called Keil a real estate reporter without
a peer, one whose smile and wit illuminated the darkest
room, according to a piece written by the Posts
Donald Trump remembered
Keil as a great guy, a fantastic reporter who understood
real estate as well as anyone in the industry.
The former columnist is
credited for recognizing that New Yorkers are interested
in what bold-face-name-people are buying or
Keil was equally
at home in a pub as he was at the citys swankiest
eateries or Hamptons estates, according to the piece.
The New York Observer
called Keil, a frequent contributor to the Posts Page
Six gossip page, New Yorks dapperest scoop artist.
NAFF TO EDIT NEW GAY MAG
Kevin Naff, editor of the Washington Blade, has
been named editor-in-chief of Genre Magazine, a magazine
startup by Blade owner Window Media, the countrys
top gay publishing house.
Naff will continue at the helm of the 40-year-old Blade
as he guides day-to-day operations and planning for the
He was previously a financial journalist for Reuters in
New York before moving on to the Baltimore Sun.
NEWSPAPER PROJECT RUNS MORE
The Newspaper Project, the month-old group of newspaper
publishers, has launched a new series of ads touting journalisms
historical role in the U.S.
With the tagline Defending Freedom Daily Since 1776,
the ads will run in newspapers in print and online nationally
The Project said he garnered more than 40K unique visitors
to its first three weeks in February.
Members of the project include Parade Publications, Community
Newspaper Holdings and the Southern Newspaper Publishers
HEARST TAPS HELIUM STRINGERS
Hearst Newspapers has inked a content deal with the online
writers community Helium.
Hearst said it will use Heliums publishing platform
to access local and lifestyle content through its stringers
and will also use Heliums community debate
feature to let readers comment on articles.
The Connecticut Post and other papers in the Constitution
State will go live with the features in the next few weeks,
Peter Newton, a former ad executive at the Boston Globe,
is VP of business development for Helium.
Hearsts senior VP for digital media, Lincoln Millstein,
said the deal allows Hearst to produce local content for
readers while also taking the necessary steps to get
our costs in line with todays economic realities.
CRAIN SHUTS RCR
Crain Communications has pulled the plug on RCR Wireless
News after a 28-year run.
The wireless industry trade pub said the market for its
products has been hit particularly hard by the global financial
In a statement, Keith Crain, chairman of CC, said it
pains us to make this move but the economy gives us no other
choice. The title, published since 1981, claimed 50,104
subscribers as of December 2007.
LHJ BOOSTS STAFF
Julie Bain, health and consumer service director for Readers
Digest, has moved to Merediths Ladies
Home Journal as features editor responsible for its
new front-of-book Journal section.
She will also assign and edit features. Bain guided all
health, fitness, nutrition and psychology coverage for RD
and established multimedia platforms, including its first
blog, Healthy Dose.
She has previously been health director for LHJ and deputy
editor for In Styles special issues.
LHJ has also added womens magazine vet Marisa Fox
as entertainment director in charge of cover stories, covers
and celebrity Q&As. She takes over for Susan Pocharski,
who left the magazine.
Fox was previously features editor at In Style and Allure,
and deputy editor at Seventeen.
KESSLER JOINS DETAILS
Mike Kessler, freelance writer for Details and Outside,
among other publications, has joined Entrepreneur
as a deputy editor.
He was previously articles editor for Denvers 5280
magazine and executive editor of Skiing.
Kessler was previously staff editor for Outside and editor-in-chief
of the quarterly No Boundaries.
Entrepreneur editor-in-chief Amy Cosper praised Kesslers
investigative prowess and journalistic curiosity.
The 31-year-old independent magazine for small and mid-sized
businesses recently underwent a revamp.
Marty Peretz, who sold The
New Republic to Canwest Global Communications, in 2007,
has bought the liberal magazine back in conjunction with
an investment group led by Laurence Grafstein, a former
The Winnipeg-based publisher says the 95-year-old magazine
as its only American asset did not fit as a
Canwest revamped TNR into a 24 times a year magazine. Peretz
will remain editor-in-chief of the magazine with Frank Foer
as editor. TNR has a circulation in the 60,000 range.
a writer and former managing editor of beverage industry
title Market Watch,
has been named chief editor of Cheers,
the monthly magazine published by the Beverage Information
Group for hospitality pros.
Edition, March 18,
2009, Page 5
OF PR FIRMS
UNVEILS TWITTER AP
Edstrom has released a beta version of a Twitter "mining"
tool intended to gauge the tone of postings to the popular
social networking service.
twendz, the service evaluates up to 70 tweets at a time
on a topic by using a keyword-based approach.
terms are compared to a database of words associated with
a positive or negative slant and the terms receive a score
that leads to twendz making an educated guess about the
tone of a tweet.
a handful of tweets are "scored," key terms are
extracted and assembled in a word cloud, which would provide
a snapshot of what is being discussed around a particular
example, on the topic of the new film "Watchmen,"
a March 12 series of tweets were gauged to be 41 percent
positive, 39 percent neutral and about 20 percent negative.
Among the terms extracted were "great," "geeks,"
"going," and "comic."
noted that the service is in a beta stage and therefore
the firm expects to change it frequently.
the application for CNET, Josh Mowensohn called it a "great
way to figure out what people are talking about without
actually having to read their tweets, something that Twitters
own search lacks and third-party software tools like TweetDeck
haven't quite nailed."
service is online at twendz.waggeneredstrom.com.
SPANISH GRUPO BPMO EXPANDS
Grupo BPMO, a Barcelona
and Madrid-based group of six communications units, has
set up an international division to cultivate global accounts.
handles services from PR to corporate publishing, digital
marketing, advertising and event management.
In such challenging
times, a possible reaction could be to stay put, watch the
big wave go by and hope for the best, said Jenny Hoefliger,
who directs the new unit, noting that GBPMO has instead
moved to expand its focus in the current environment.
BRIEFS: The IPREX
network of PR firms has added clean tech firm
Antenna Group of San Francisco as a partner. ...LaVoie
Group, Salem, Mass., received a 2008 Impact Award
from the League of American Communications Professions in
the the Best Industry-Exclusive Agency category.
...Marx Layne &
Company, Farmington Hills, Mich., was named to Corp!
Magazines best in its Best of
Michigan Business competition. ...Sitrick
and Company, Los Angeles, is working with Herbst
Gaming as the casino operator navigates Chapter 11 bankruptcy.
a virtual consultancy based in Huntington Beach, Calif.,
said it has developed PinPointPR, a cost-efficient localized
PR service based on its network of 1,200 freelancers nationally.
A flat rate of about $2K/month is set for each market. Info:
...Rhea + Kaiser Marketing
Communications, Naperville, Ill., nabbed three best
of show awards, 31 first-place honors and 20 regional merit
awards in the Regional Best of National Agri-Marketing Association
Silver Associates, New York/Turkish Tourism &
Culture Office, for a destination marketing program targeting
North America. The work includes promotion of Istanbul as
the 2010 European Capital of Culture.
Media International, New York/Nabbr, for PR support
for its Gen Y online video network; American Library Assn.,
for the 40th anniversary of the Coretta Scott King Awards;
World Science Festival, June event in New York, and Starmount
Life Insurance Co., for PR.
Schwartz & Co., New York/HCL plc, U.K. healthcare
recruitment for U.S. jobs; New York University School of
Continuing and Professional Studies, as it approaches its
75th anniversary, and C. Crane Company, direct marketer
of consumer products, all for PR.
New York/FreshDirect, online food purveyor and delivery
service, for traditional and digital PR.
+ Communications, Weston, Conn./Cache-A Corp., for
introduction of new video storage solutions, including PR
and trade show support. The first new product debuts in
April at the NAB convention.
Castle Group, Boston/Salem Five Bank, 20-branch savings
bank, as AOR for PR, and the Massachusetts College of Art
and Design, for development of a strategic PR plan and comms.
support. Mass. College Goal Sunday has renewed as a client
for a fifth year.
Communications, Pittsburgh, Pa./
Redstone Highlands, non-profit senior living community,
as AOR for PR.
Washington, D.C./National Insulation Association, to educate
industry and policymakers on commerical and industrial insulation
and its benefits to reducing energy consumption and greenhouse
PR, Raleigh, N.C./SpectorSoft Corp., Internet and
PR monitoring and surveillance software, and Atlantic Business
Technologies, web development, for PR.
Communications Group, Atlanta/
Ian Thomas Group, engineering software, for PR including
messaging and press materials, analyst and media relations,
and a strategic visibility program for founder
Pigott & Fox PR, Nashville, Tenn./Tennessee State
Collaborative on Reforming Education, or SCORE, a nonpartisan
statewide push headed by former U.S. Senate Majority Leader
Bill Frist. MP&F is handling national media outreach,
community engagement and event planning.
Group, Campbell, Calif./Mokeena, new media infrastructure,
& Schmid, San Diego/City of San Diegos
Redevelopment Agency, for PR, graphic design and community
outreach focused on its affordable housing offerings, projects
and public participation opportunities in the city.
Edition, March 18, 2009, Page 6
PREPS REALITY SHOW AXMEN
York-based media training firm Laskin Media was tapped by
The History Channel to prep two professional loggers featured
on the second season of the network's popular reality show
Rygaard and Jimmy Smith, neither of whom had ever appeared
in a TV interview, were media-trained by LM president Barbara
Laskin and hit the airwaves with appearances on Fox
& Friends" and Red Eye.
Fox & Friends, the duo appeared in a snowy outdoor interview
in front of the News Corp. building in New York and conducted
a logging demonstration on the sidewalk with a chainsaw.
Both men discussed the upcoming show and outlined injuries
sustained in the field. A clip is at foxnews.com.
new season of Axmen debuted on March 2.
ELIAS UPPED AT TELLY-WINNER
Monica Elias, who directs
fashion, beauty and luxury accounts at Medialink, has been
promoted to VP, client solutions.
Monica has orchestrated
hundreds of successful campaigns for clients and truly understands
how to help them express the prestige of their brands on
air and increasingly on the web, said Larry Thomas,
COO of the broadcast and interactive services company.
Elias has been with Medialink
Medialink also said it
picked up two Telly Awards in the Live Events
and Viral Video categories.
The company was hired
by Cohn & Wolfe to produce videos for client Irish Spring,
which included shooting footage of a dozen men dressed up
as leprechauns in New York.
The second win was for
a campaign with GolinHarris and Smithfield foods that includes
B-roll and an interactive news release with celebrity chef
Wire said it has extended its relationship with custom
publisher SmartBrief, which produces 35 industry email newsletters.
BW users can distribute content to SB newsletters to supplement
any geographic circuit. Cost is $150 per newsletter, which
include NLs for the American Assn. of Advertising Agencies,
International Dairy Foods Assn. and the National Retail
Federation. BW has also enhanced its web-only social media
platform, EON: Enhanced Online News. The additions include
a tag cloud generator, relocation of its iFrame preview,
and the addition of social media buttons for sites like
Digg, Delicious and Twitter, ...TEKgroup
International has developed an integrated social
media package for its online newsroom software which includes
the ability to share content via social media accounts.
TEKgroup says it can ease the burden of overseeing viral
messages for communcators and journalists. Content can also
be tagged and sent via sites like Twitter. ...West
Glen Communications, New York, says it has a stimulus
package for non-profits that includes four 15-minute satellite
feeds of PSAs with TV notifcation for a month at no cost
to the organization. Deadline for consideration is March
27. Contact [email protected].
Gorman, head of PR for Liquidnet, to Kwittken &
Company, New York, as a managing director charged with growing
the firms financial services practice. Liquidnet is
a digital marketplace for equities trading. K&C has
also added Russell
Weigandt, a former comms. specialist for Chubb, as
a senior A/E in editorial services. Will
Nikosey, a social media consultant, has joined as
Floyd and Kelly
Seipe to A/Es for PR accounts, White Good & Co.
Advertising, Lancaster, Pa.
Fredo, former PR director for the Venice Simplon
Orient Express luxury train and hotels, to Ferri & Partners,
Miami, as a director in its New York office. She was also
former VP of Chiat-Day PR.
Lisa Gaynes, former director of marketing for Course
Manager International, joins as director of business development
in Sacramento. Rich
Roberts, former head of comms. for Wyndham Worldwides
Hotel Group and an ex-reporter, joins as a director focused
on lodging accounts, and Bill
Warelis, who held posts at Burson-Marsteller, Hill
& Knowlton and Edelman, takes a director role in Toronto.
Orr, show manager for New Hope Natural Media, to
Sue Procko PR, Los Angeles, as VP of business development.
She is former director of sales and special events for Brunico
Barritt, a partner at Ketchum, to director of online
relationships and reputation for the firms global
food and nutrition practice, a new post. He was previously
director of Ketchums global issues and crisis management
Devine to A/E, Koroberi Inc., Chapel Hill, N.C.
Reed to VP of interactive services, communications
21, Atlanta. She has been with the firm since 2005.
Bentley to A/S and Kayla
Schmit to A/C, Vollmer PR, Houston. In Dallas, Vollmer
promoted Ashley Johnson,
Rupa Patel and
to A/E. In New York, Kate
Sutherland to senior A/E and Nicole
Buckley to A/E.
Rathier, VP of external and internal comms. for Domtar,
to Cohn & Wolfe, Montreal, as a managing partner.
Cranford to managing director, health and advocacy,
MS&L, London. Clare
Lucker, former director and head of PR at Axon Communications,
joins as U.K. head of healthcare for MS&L.
Kraus, president and CEO of APCO Worldwide, was inducted
into the Enterprising Women Hall of Fame on March 12 in
Lake Buena Vista, Fla. The hall of fame was started by Enterprising
Women magazine in 2002. Kraus founded APCO in 1984.
The firm billed $112.4M in 2008.
Edition, March 18, 2009, Page 7
founder of Financial Relations Board and managing partner
of StevensGouldPincus, management consulting firm, said
the PR industry has spent a half century preaching consistency
in financial reporting and transparency.
is nothing as important in reputation-building as credibility,
and the only path to lasting credibility is truth, openness
and transparency, he said.
transparency has paid handsome dividends in keeping the
confidence of customers, employees, shareholders and Wall
Street, he continued.
was appalled by the paranoid mentality that has swept
over a substantial segment of the PR agency field in knee-jerk
reaction to the economic meltdown of the past six months.
this year, in many cases, noted the management consultant,
the holy teachings of transparency were shelved as
agencies ran for cover. Even though some experienced only
a drizzle, not a monsoon, they suddenly were beset with
he said was that 23 of the 25 largest independent agencies
on his roster reported faithfullywhether good numbers
or bad for 08although 48 other agencies refused
to disclose their latest numbers and effectively dropped
out of his rankings.
Pincus: If you needed proof that this was the best
policy, you could look no further than a 2007 study by Accenture
that documented the evidence that all-weather transparency
by public companies paid a solid return in long term street
support. As an analyst or money manager, you tended to sponsor
those companies that placed sustainable credibility above
temporary embarrassment. They were never in the closet.
LIBYA PAYS LIVINGSTON $750K
Libya paid more than $750K
in fees since September to The Livingston Group for its
work to improve ties with the U.S. That sum generated half
of the firms foreign fees.
The firm of former Speaker-designate
Bob Livingston organized events at Libyas Embassy,
met with Senators/Congressmen, pitched corporations (ExxonMobil,
Carlyle Group, Northrop Grumman) and squired a military
delegation around D.C., according to TLGs federal
Former Hill & Knowlton
staffer Lauri Fitz-Pegado is among TLG staffers working
the account. She traveled to the World Economic Forum in
Davos in February with Saif al-Islam al-Gaddafi, the head
of the Gaddafi International Charity and Development Foundation
and eldest son of Libyan leader Col. Gaddafi.
He talked about human
rights, role of a civil society, climate change, education
Libya formalized ties
with the U.S. in 08, 20 years after its agents blew
up Pan Am Flight 203 over Lockerbie, Scotland.
PACIFIC ENERGY TAPS BOARDMARKER
Pacific Energy Resources
has tapped Boardmarker Group to handle the Chapter 11 filing
of the Long Beach, CA.-based oil/gas company squeezed by
falling prices and a heavy debt burden.
PER, the former Shamrock
Resources, blames the filing on the dramatic decrease
in the market price of oil over the past five months,
debt related to past acquisitions, and poor capital markets
for a cash flow insufficient to operate its business
and invest in its oil production assets to increase production.
Boardmarker is headed
by Dean Stuart and headquartered in Calgary, Alberta. He
worked in the economics department of Nova Corp. before
joining the Alberta Stock Exchange. His firm has served
financial communications and IR needs of natural resources
clients such as Anglo Canadian Uranium, Ultra Uranium, Belmont
Resources, Athabasca Minerals and Minco Gold Corp.
RF CUTS FEES IN ISRAEL
Ruder Finn said it is
cutting its PR rates by up to 15 percent for Israel-based
clients to avoid cancellations to PR plans.
Glenn Jasper, managing
director for RF Israel, said companies that pull the plug
on PR plans are actually playing a role in prolonging
the economic downturn.
The Bank of Israel said last week that the countrys
economy is in its worst slump since its founding in 1948.
The independent firm,
which put out a news release announcing the price cuts,
said it will reduce fees from 10 to 15 percent for clients
of the Jewish state.
RF Israel is based in
Jerusalem and its clients in the country include ECI Telecom,
ECtel and AORA.
SITRICK SAYS BROWN STICKING
Sitrick and Company issued
a statement on March 12 for a manager of singer Chris Brown
to dispel reports that the embattled recording artist is
considering new PR and legal counsel.
Reports that Chris
is looking to replace his team, including Mark Geragos,
Tina Davis and Mike Sitrick, are false, said Joyce
Hawkins, who co-manages the 19-year-old Brown. There
are only two people who could make a change at that level
on Chris behalf: his business attorney Kenny Meiselas
and me and neither of us were the source of this
A popular and top-selling
singer, Browns image has plummeted in the wake of
February accusations that he allegedly abused his girlfriend,
the singer Rhianna. The 19-year-old has been charged with
two felonies in the alleged assault.
Sitrick was called in
after that story broke and before a picture apparently depicting
Rhianna with facial bruises surfaced on the Internet last
Tabloid media have swarmed to the story and have reported
that the two entertainers are working to reconcile their
Brown took another image
blow recently when photos of him gleefully racing around
on a Wave Runner were aired and published, and he was forced
to withdraw from the Kids Choice Awards this month
because of the fallout.
The reports have begun
to hit Browns career and wallet as well. Radio stations
have pulled his songs from rotation and San Diego ad/PR
firm Red Lizard Creative on March 13 issued a statement
for client BigHeaded Boxers saying that Brown has repudiated
his contract with the company.
Edition, March 18, 2009,
veteran Ted Pincus has spoken out
on the folly of PR firms only reporting their figures when
theyre good (page one).
has said it as well as we could but with more authority
since he built what was the largest financial PR and IR
firms (Financial Relations Board) and knows firsthand the
value of consistent financial reporting.
fact that 50 PR firms ducked the rankings ostensibly because
they had lower figures does not speak well for the industry.
of the raps on PR is that its practitioners are all over
the press when they have good news to spread but cant
be found when something unpleasant arises.
bright spot is that 23 of the 25 largest firms put out their
figures even though 12 of them were just about flat (rose
3% or less) and one was down less than 3%.
of the six biggest firms were up in double figures. They
have been steady reporters for many years and their success
may have something to do with the consistency they have
shown in reporting their figures.
are flocking to the major brands because of the solid records
they are compiling.
firms in the top 100 ($2.6M and up) also had good growth,
26 reporting double-digit gains.
only lost ten of the firms ranked 26 to 100, meaning we
lost 38 firms from 101 to 190. Those with less than $2.5M
in fees ran into more trouble in 2008 (mostly in the last
quarter) than firms in the top 100.
continue to be disappointed at the boycott of PR firm rankings
by the conglomerates (WPP, OMC, IPG, Publicis & Havas).
applaud Cincinnati counselor Rodger Roeser of the
Eisen Marketing Group for starting the PR Agency Owners
Assn. for small and large independent firms (3/11 NL).
There is no fee to join
the PRAOA which will bring agency owners together to discuss
common problems such as managing staff, building the business,
succession, legal questions and handling RFPs.
The Council of PR Firms
covers similar issues but its membership fees (starting
at $2,500) are far too high for nearly 100% of the 10,000+
U.S. firms including freelancers and solo practitioners,
a breed that will multiply in the current frigid economic
Eisen, former president
of PRS/Cincinnati, says he continues to regard PRS as a
wonderful organization but says many of its
members are young and are not senior level practitioners
facing ownership challenges and issues.
We agree with Eisen that
much of PR has migrated to firms where there is independence
of opinion and a variety of creative challenges to occupy
Corporate ad departments
closed in the 1950s and 60s as advertising shifted to ad
agencies for the same reasons. Most corporate PR today is
defensivekeeping press at bay. What is left is mostly
aimed at internal audiences and doesnt qualify as
Eisen has an ad showing
that an entry level PR person can cost up to $90K a year
for pay, office equipment, benefits, taxes, etc., while
$50K to a PR firm can buy expert advice and the latest communication
Memberships are at www.thatmarketingshow.com
(click Join the PROA.)
Icahn, Warren Buffet and a host of financial critics
say the current economic mess is due to weak and inoperative
boards of directors that have too many insiders and lack
PR Society board has been picked from about 5% of members
for the past 35 years because of the requirement
for APR, service as chapter, district, section, national
committee leader, or voting in an Assembly. Leadership"
is defined as how many Society posts have been held rather
than leadership in the business world.
of the last 15 chairs/presidents have been solo practitioners
or in small firmsMike Cherenson and Jeff Julin in
small firms; Rhoda Weiss, solo; Cheryl Procter-Rogers, solo
after leaving HBO mid-term; Judith Phair, solo; Del Galloway,
headed small PR dept. in ad agency that dissolved; Reed
Byrum, solo; Joann Killeen, small firm; Steve Pisinski,
small firm; Sam Waltz, small firm; Mary Lynn Cusick, small
IR/PR dept. of a company; Debra Miller, educational administrator;
Luis Morales (1996), solo after leaving Robert Morris Assn.
in February of presidency.
last CEO of PRS who headed a major PR firm was John
Beardsley, 1995 president, of Padilla Speer Beardsley, 13th
largest PR firm in 2008. Kathy Lewton, 2001 president, was
with Fleishman-Hillard as a VP.
New York was dominant in the Society, its presidents
were the heads of big PR firms such as Kal Druck of Harshe-Rotman
& Druck and George Hammond of Carl Byoir & Assocs.,
or big corporate PR depts. (Kerryn King of Texaco, Don McCammond
of American Can, Jon Riffel of Pacific Gas & Electric,
and Joe Awad of Reynolds Metals.)
directors allow numerous abuses to go on unchecked
including withholding the transcript of the 2008 Assembly,
refusing to discuss whether blacks should join the board,
minutes of the Jan. 23 board meeting have yet to
These same directors are now demanding that anyone who wants
to join the board and who is not APR must show more than
20 years of experience in PR with increasing levels
of responsibility. We dont see any of the current
directors meeting that bar.
perplexed that director Gail Winslow-Pine, who is
with the Catholic Medical Center in N.H., is involved in
PRS policies and practices. As a Catholic, we believe in
the Seventh Commandment which says "Thou Shalt Not
Steal." Surely a corollary to this Commandment is,
"At least give it back if you do steal."
We would like get the
profits that PRS made selling at least 50,000 copies of
our articles and would like Winslow-Pine and the other PRS
directors to give us a fair hearing on this, thereby living
up to the fairness part of the PRS code.
The Dept. of Health &
Human Services in 2007 charged that CMC overbilled Medicare
by $1.7 million in 2003 but the claims were dismissed in
June 2008 by National Government Services on the ground
that they were beyond the four-year recovery period.