Asking for your PR opinion: What is your best tip for writing great quotes for news releases?

By Gerard Braud –     As a corporate writer or public relations professional, capturing the attention of your audience and writing effective news releases, let alone great quotes, is not an easy task.  That is why I am asking you to contribute to our weekly communications and PR discussion questions by sharing your best advice with your […]

What is the best way to get in touch with a busy reporter?

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By Gerard Braud – For public relations professionals and corporate communicators, it can be difficult to grab the attention of the media.  I am asking for your bite-sized bits of best practices for getting in touch with busy reporters. This week and every week we seek your best communications practices on the BraudCast. Please share […]

BraudCast Answer: What is your best advice to persuade your executives or CEO to take a media training class?

By Gerard Braud – It can be extremely difficult for public relations and corporate communications teams to convince their CEO or executives that one bad interview can severely harm their reputation or revenue. This week the BraudCast question was, “What is your best advice to persuade your executives or CEO to take a media training […]

BraudCast Question: What is your best advice to persuade your executives or CEO to take a media training class?

CEO media training 3Q braudcast

By Gerard Braud – CEOs and executives may fear embarrassment in a media training class, they may have a hectic schedule, or can’t justify spending their revenue on a media trainer. Public relations professionals and internal communications professionals often have a difficult time getting their CEO or executives to put media training on their calendar. […]

Please Share Your Public Relations Smarts: Here is How

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Because you are so darn smart, it is time to share YOUR smarts. Your bite size bits of best practices are valuable to others just like you. So — ta-dah, drum roll – behold, The BraudCast 2.0 where you are invited to share your best practices in public relations, media relations, social media, crisis communications […]

Tutorial #17 Using Skype as Part of Your Crisis Communications Plan

Tutorial #17 by Gerard Braud – As more media outlets cut back on the size of their news staff, they are seeking more videos provided by eyewitnesses or experts. This is where you come in… and this creates a huge opportunity for you. I am publishing this series of tutorials to show corporate spokespeople, public information officers […]

Tutorial #15 How to Prepare for a Live Skype Interview with Local or National Media

Tutorial # 15 By Gerard Braud – In this series of 23 articles and videos, you will learn the skills needed to film and publish an online news report video about your crisis. If your event is newsworthy and your video is shot professionally, it could lead to a live interview with local or national […]

Social Media Collides With Mainstream Media: The Changing Landscape of Media Interviews in Good Times & Bad

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By Gerard Braud – As social media and smart phones expand their reach, we are seeing a seismic shift that is sending tremors through the mainstream media landscape. This is creating both new challenges, as well as new opportunities for media spokespeople. Capitalizing on the opportunities requires you to adopt new approaches, learn new skills […]

Hurricane Season Crisis & Emergency Communications: Why You Should be a CNN iReporter

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By Gerard Braud — The future of crisis and emergency communications in hurricanes, natural disasters and other weather related events,  is in creating CNN iReports. It is a brilliant way to add to your crisis communications and media relations strategy. This strategy is perfect for public information officers (PIOs), emergency managers, and any corporate communications […]

4 Tips to Avoid the Worst Sentence in a News Release

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By Gerard Braud – The worst sentence to begin a news release is, “We are excited to announce…” If you hire a so-called public relations expert to write your news release and they write this, you should fire them. If you have written this yourself because you’ve seen others do the same thing, please stop. […]

6 PR Questions: Are You a Rug or a Flying Carpet?

By Gerard Braud – In your public relations and communications role, which are you? Are you a rug or a flying carpet? My dream is for you to soar as a PR expert, being both a thought leader and a brilliant, innovative, practitioner of your craft. My fear is that you let the so-called leaders […]

4 Media Training Tips from Marco Rubio’s Interview with Chris Wallace

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By Gerard Braud – I’m irritated by how Chris Wallace conducted his interview with Marco Rubio on Fox News Sunday. The media interview is generating a barrage of news stories about where Rubio stands on the issue of whether the U.S. should have invaded Iraq. For the full context of this article, watch this clip […]

3 Key Human Resources Considerations & 5 Strategies for Employee Communications in a Crisis

By Gerard Braud – You’ve heard HR leaders and executives say it many times, “Our employees are our number one asset.” If this is true, should those same employees also become your most important audience when a crisis strikes? An increasing number of HR departments are taking the lead in crisis communications planning to make […]

5 Crisis Communications Lessons from Dr. Oz

booklesson gerard braud

By Gerard Braud – Dr. Mehmet Oz is in crisis communications mode. He has been making headlines in the media as medical colleagues criticize him for advice he gives and things he says on his syndicated television program. His hometown newspaper, the New Jersey Register, asked for my opinion on how Oz has begun to […]

4 Media Training & Interview Tips Courtesy of Jeb Bush & Megyn Kelly

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By Gerard Braud – Media training is not just about being an expert when it comes to answering a question. Media interview skills also require you to know how to ask questions of the reporter. The fuss about presidential candidate Jeb Bush is a case in point, based on an answer he gave to Fox […]

#FireBrittMcHenry: The ESPN Media & Social Media Crisis

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By Gerard Braud– How would you or your company handle the situation if one of your employees did what ESPN reporter Britt McHenry did? A media and social media crisis has been created for ESPN and McHenry when a video was posted that showed McHenry berating an employee of an auto towing company. At this […]

7 Media Training & Spokesperson Lessons from Rand Paul vs. Savannah Guthrie

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By Gerard Braud – The New York Times called me Friday for a comment about Rand Paul’s hostile interview with NBC’s Savannah Guthrie. When the Times starts calling for observations, that means the political season is in full swing. Reporter Alan Rappeport does a great job covering candidates and the things they say in his […]

4 Media Relations Lessons from Rolling Stone and 5 Public Relations Ways to Deal With Bad Reporters

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By Gerard Braud – The Rolling Stone Magazine retraction of their University of Virginia gang rape story is filled with parallels I often warn of in my media training and crisis communications programs. Here are 4 realities: 1) Reporters love an underdog and generally value the word of the accuser more than the word of […]

Social Media When “It” Hits the Fan

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By Gerard Braud – Why are so many powerful people oblivious to the potent, negative power of social media? Every day there is a new crisis communication case study and today it is from Aaron Schock, who has resigned as Congressman from Illinois. Schock created his own crisis with excessive selfies and posts on social […]

Crisis Communication & Media Hide and Seek: The ExxonMobil Torrance Refinery Explosion

ExxonMobile-#1-No Release

By Gerard Braud – Where is the ExxonMobil news release for the ExxonMobil Torrance Refinery explosion? An explosion is a crisis, which requires expert crisis communications. The media would expect information on the corporate news release page. Media want it fast and easy to find. But look what you find on the ExxonMobil news release page […]

Brian Williams Suspended: Layers of a Media Crisis for NBC & Williams

Brian-Daily

By Gerard Braud – Leave it to Jon Stewart to once again be the expert voice of reason in modern media. He clearly points out in this crisis that there is the “Brian Williams Anchorman” persona, and as I pointed out previously, the “Brian Williams Storyteller” persona at public events where he appears as a […]

Je Suis Brian Williams

Jes'suit  Brian Williams Gerard Braud

By Gerard Braud Amid the media stories and lingering crisis surrounding Brian Williams, I will raise these questions. 1. Was the story true to the teller? 2. Would others on that mission recall events differently? 3. When you recall an event and tell that story, is it true to you, while others might recall it […]

Selecting the Right Spokesperson: Should it be Multiple People?

Trainwreck CEO

Who should be your media spokesperson? In this series of blogs, we have reviewed the argument for the CEO serving as the spokesperson and the PR person serving as the media spokesperson. Consider option 3: Should a Variety of People Should Serve as Your Media Spokespeople? A subject matter expert, with proper media training, can be […]

How to Select the Right Spokesperson? Should it be the PR person?

Who should be your media spokesperson in a crisis? In a recent blog, we reviewed Argument #1: The CEO Should Always Be the Spokesperson. Now we can review Argument #2: When Should the PR Person Be the Spokesperson? The public relations person is an excellent choice as a spokesperson in the first hour of the crisis when […]

Crisis Communication Lessons for the Super Bowl Bound New England Patriots

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Why are we still talking about deflated footballs days before the Super Bowl? Best in class public relations, expert crisis communications, and expert media relations can be personified by not letting a little issue grow into a big issue. If a small weed grows in my garden, I pull it right away so it doesn’t […]

The Fog of Decision Paralysis: A Lesson in Crisis Behavior

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You should know it is fog season in New Orleans. With fog season comes some significant lessons about human behavior in a crisis. Dive in with me, if you will, on an incredibly foggy morning. We are crossing a 12 mile long bridge over Lake Pontchartrain from Mandeville, Louisiana to New Orleans. We’re on this […]

Public Relations Help for the Asking

Gerard Braud PR Help

Today’s public relations epiphany is that too many people in public relations fail to ask for help when they need it. There are many sources for expert help and advice. There are great professional organizations like the Public Relations Society of America (PRSA), the International Association of Business Communicators (IABC), the Canadian Public Relations Society […]

A PR Epiphany About Your Value As a Public Relations Expert

Gerard Braud Epiphany PR

Did you find your moment of public relations epiphany following yesterday’s blog and BraudCast video? I’d love for you to write me at gerard@braudcommunications.com and tell me what it is. In addition to yesterday’s epiphany, there are several others I’d like to share with you as we all work together as communications professionals seeking to achieve effective […]

What is Your Public Relations & Personal Epiphany?

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  I’d like you to stop for a moment as you plan for the New Year and your public relations goals. Reflect if you will, on the year that just ended, as well as the years before. Today is the Day of Epiphany, and I’d like to challenge you to identify moments of epiphany in […]

Media Training 23: Selecting the Right Spokesperson

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By Gerard Braud www.braudcommunications.com Picking the right spokesperson really depends upon the situation. Many organizations tend to have two extremes in selecting spokespeople. Some organizations always send out their top PR person while other organizations insist that only the CEO speak. I endorse neither of these approaches as perfect and will suggest that sometimes the […]

Media Training 17: What Makes the Media Say Wow! – Commit News

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By Gerard Braud www.braudcommunications.com As a reporter, I generally hated going to a news conference or a media event that was about good news. It’s not that I’m opposed to covering good news, it’s just that generally the spokespeople were poorly prepared and the organizers were completely oblivious of the wants, needs and desires of […]

Media Training 11: Why do they interview people with no teeth who live in a trailer (with all due respect to trailer dwellers)

Gerard Braud Audience 11

By Gerard Braud www.braudcommunications.com Let’s be respectful here and realize that many poor people don’t have either dental insurance or the ability to pay out of pocket for dental care. And let’s realize that while hoping to someday fulfill the dream of home ownership, many people live in an affordable alternative – a mobile home. Let’s […]

Media Training 9: The Myth about 3 Key Messages

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By Gerard Braud www.braudcommunications.com  So in the last lesson, we talked about not letting facts get in the way of a good story. The secret is to keep it simple. When you go through media training (which I enjoy teaching more than anything in the world and I would still do every day even if I […]

Social Media Force Fit at KFC

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By Gerard Braud A soft drink cup at KFC screamed, “SOCIAL MEDIA FORCE FIT,” as I munched on my original recipe drum stick. The cup had the hashtag “#HowDoYouKFC?” Nothing says uncool like adults trying to get young people to be cool by doing something uncool in an attempt to be cool. (Did you follow […]

You’re “Excited” AND “Pleased” ??? Wow, That’s Effective Communications: NOT

What if you learned that your writing and communications skills are really are sub-par? Would you want someone to tell you? Here is an example– An IABC e-mail just reached my inbox. The lead sentence says, “I’m excited about…” That is sub-par writing and public relations. It is shocking that public relations people cannot write […]

The Doctor of Crisis Communications

Crisis communications doctor gerard braud

If you were a smoker and your doctor told you to stop or you would die of cancer, would you stop? If you had diabetes and your doctor told you to change your diet so you don’t die, would you change? Amazingly, there are people every day who ignore the advice of an expert and […]

Ebola Crisis Communications, Finding God, and Your Leadership Team

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Executives and crisis communications enthusiasts remind me of criminals who find God 15 minutes after then enter prison, then forget God 15 minutes after they are back on the street. Here’s why… True story from this week: The president of an institution wants crisis communications help now! Why? Because a crisis is at their door, […]

5 Ebola Crisis Communications Considerations

5 Ebola Considerations Gerard Braud

By Gerard Braud Your personality type may decide the fate of your crisis communication response if the Ebola crisis touches your company (or the company for your work for.) On one extreme is the personality that says, “It’s too soon. Maybe we should watch it and wait and see.” On the other extreme are those […]

Ebola Crisis Communication Planning and Crisis Management Planning

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Is it too soon to talk about your Ebola crisis communications strategies and plan? A New York based public relations professional asked me that question today. I responded by saying, “Why wait? One week ago no one in Dallas gave Ebola crisis communications a second thought. Today, at lease 14 businesses and government entities have […]

NFL Crisis Sets Off Cynics

Nomoreblog

Don’t set me off. I’m a cynic. The NFL crisis and its flawed communications strategy continues to set off the cynic in me. A huge part of my crisis communications plan strategy and the crisis management advice provided to my clients is based upon understanding how to effectively communicate to the cynics. Sunday night the […]

Corporate Whitewashing

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By Gerard Braud The NFL now has two strikes against it for throwing money at advocacy groups and causes as a way to make it appear they care about an issue. Is this corporate whitewashing? It wasn’t until concussion issues became part of a high-profile lawsuit that the NFL began donating money to groups who […]

NFL Crisis Management and Crisis Communications Double Standard

Suspend Goodell - Gerard Braud NFL Crisis

By Gerard Braud   NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell missed a crisis management and crisis communications opportunity to end the Ray Rice crisis. Sunday should have been the day Roger Goodell announced to the world that he would be suspending himself for one year. It would have displayed leadership in a crisis. It would have been […]

3 Questions to Ask about the Intersection of Crisis Management, Crisis Communication, and Crisis Communications Plans: The NFL

By Gerard Braud Another crisis management and crisis communication lesson plays out in the NFL as the Associated Press reports the NFL had a copy of the videotape showing Ray Rice punching his fiance in the face. This exposes a crisis management and crisis communication weakness found in many organizations, which either involves leaders intentionally […]

4 Crisis Communications Lessons as the NFL Management Struggles with the Ray Rice Smoldering Crisis

Rayrice blog gerard braud

By Gerard Braud The NFL has a crisis. Do they have a plan? Will the crisis get worse because of non-verbal communications? Can the NFL management communicate their way out of the crisis? Below are some observations and suggestions to help you cope with your own corporate crisis. The non-verbal message from the NFL is […]

Secrets to Effective Key Messages for Media Training

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By Gerard Braud Do your key messages suck? Most people think not. I think they usually do. Expert Media Training requires solid key messages. But public relations people have been taught that a key message is little more than giving your spokesperson or CEO a handful of bullet points, then turning them loose to do […]

Key Messages That Convey What’s In It For Your Audience: Apple iPhone 6

By Gerard Braud As I watch the Apple iPhone 6 roll out, I’m hearing lots of technical stuff. That’s great if you are a techno geek who cares about screen size, pixels and data points. But what does the new iPhone 6 do to make my life better? As a consumer where is the “What’s […]

3 Ways to Refocus for Fall and Beyond: Better Public Relations After Summer’s Distractions

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By Gerard Braud Is “work – life” balance possible for people in public relations? Experience tells me many public relations professionals get stressed trying to complete job tasks while also balancing their family or personal life, especially this time of year. Look at your life today, for example. The kids are back in school. The […]

Crisis Communications: 3 Steps to Take to Manage Social Media Trolls

Troll Blog

By Gerard Braud Would you let social media trolls take over your social media sites? In your crisis communications plan what pre-determines how you will deal with social media trolls? Social media trolls are usually mean-spirited people who hide behind an anonymous persona and live for the joy of making other people miserable by posting […]

Crisis Communications: When Social Media is Mandatory, When it is Optional, and When it is Useless in a Crisis

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By Gerard Braud Many thanks to Shel Holtz for his crisis communications podcast that explores whether there is ever a right time to take your social media sites dark during a crisis. You can listen to the entire podcast here. Some folks are appalled at the suggestion of taking a social media site dark and they […]

Crisis Communications Management: The Ebola Expert vs. The Social Media Celebrity Alarmist

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By Gerard Braud Social media complicates crisis communications, especially when an expert is pitted against alarmists and detractors on social media. Crisis communications and crisis management get more difficult when the social media alarmist is a celebrity. Donald Trump has taken to his Twitter account to say that people with Ebola should not be brought […]

Three Media Training and Crisis Communications Tips for Doctors and Employers

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By Gerard Braud The current Ebola crisis has the media calling upon their medical experts to communicate about infected patients being flown to the United States for treatment. Media training for this type of crisis requires you to have a plan for how your doctors and physicians will respond if they are called upon to […]

Disturbing Television Media Trend #7: Unconfirmed Reports

Black Hole Theory CNN Malaysia

By Gerard Braud If the story of Chicken Little was told today, there is a strong likelihood that it would quickly be picked-up by, and reported by, the television news media. It would go like this: Chicken Little would have an acorn fall on her head, she would scream, “The sky is falling.” Minutes later […]

Disturbing Television News Trend #6: Social Media Backlash

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By Gerard Braud Social media is like a compass. A compass has 360 degrees or points on it. If you face one direction, the opposite direction is 180 degrees from you. In social media, any time you take a position on a topic, you can be assured that someone else has an opinion 180 degrees […]

Disturbing Media Trend #3: Exclusive

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By Gerard Braud Who would have ever thought that your media interview would be proclaimed by the television news media as an exclusive, when your interview might only be a run-of-the-mill, routine interview? Day and night we see the television news media proclaiming in words and news banner graphics that an interview or news story […]

Disturbing News Trend #4: Trending Now

Whats Trending News

By Gerard Braud “Trending today” or “trending now” are phrases I hate to hear on television news. If news is defined as information that allows us to make smarter, more informed decisions, then a trending video of a cat playing with string is not news. Each day there is less news on news programs. News […]

7 Disturbing News Media Trends & How You Can Combat Them

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By Gerard Braud The television news media continue to go from bad to worse. New disturbing trends have a huge impact on public relations, your media interactions, and the reputation and revenues of your employer. How do you combat these disturbing trends? Join media relations expert and former journalist Gerard Braud (Jared Bro) on Wednesday, […]

Social Media for Crisis Communications: Social Media as the Cause of Your Crisis

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By Gerard Braud As we examine the leadership gap, the generation gap, and shiny new object syndrome, let’s note that in many cases, in the world of crisis communications, social media can be a greater source of bad than good. The fact that a citizen can post a picture of a plane crash before the […]

Social Media for Crisis Communications: Social Media for Crisis Communication and the Generation Gap

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By Gerard Braud As we discuss social media as a crisis communication tool that allows you to reach your core audience, this is a good time to explore what I will describe as both the leadership gap and the generation gap, that social media presents. People in leadership positions, traditionally perform poorly in a crisis because […]

Social Media When It Hits the Fan: Follow-up for NRECA Connect 14 Conference

Gerard Braud NRECA 14

By Gerard Braud Here are your Free Crisis Communications Plan resources we discussed during my NRECA conference presentation in San Antonio last week. Free Resource #1 To download a Free copy of the First Critical Statement used in my Crisis Communications Plan, use the coupon code CRISISCOMPLAN when you select the item from my shopping cart. […]

Expert Advice for Media Training Key Messages

By Gerard Braud Can we have an intimate, professional conversation? The presumption is you are an expert in public relations and that the executives and leaders where you work need expert key messages for media training, to be an expert spokesperson. Here we go: Good looking Intelligent Public relations professional Mistakes of the past Bullet […]

Getting Ready to Get Ready to Get Started to Begin

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by Gerard Braud Corporate public relations moves too slow. Not a day goes by that I don’t have a phone call with a public relations person who is telling me what they can’t do and why they can’t do it. This trend concerns me gravely. I call this getting ready to get ready to get […]

The Great Crisis Communication Lie: A Plan Can’t Anticipate Everything

Crisis Communication movie gerard braud

By Gerard Braud It’s been said that the person who says something can’t be done is always right. Does this adage apply to crisis communication and crisis communications plans? The Malaysia Airlines crisis and communication challenges with the media and families have many in public relations saying, “This is unprecedented. You can’t prepare for this.” […]

Media Training and Word Vomit (Ew! Gross)

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By Gerard Braud While teaching interview skills in a media training class, a participating executive provided expert insight to the lesson I was teaching. “So you don’t want us to word vomit everything we know in a media interview, right?” he asked. That isn’t how I would have phrased it, but now that I think […]

Who Should Be Your Spokesperson in a Crisis?

Entergy Drill Gerard Braud

By Gerard Braud In media training and crisis communications training, there are many debates about who should be your spokesperson in a crisis. Here are three common arguments and what you should consider. Argument 1: The CEO Should Always Be the Spokesperson A CEO who wants to be the only spokesperson is destined for failure. […]

Re-Think Your Writing: Three Ways to Make Your Words Resonate With Your Audiences

By Gerard Braud Few people read to the end of an article. I have little confidence that you will read to the end of this article, even though the final thought may change your life and career. Every reader makes several judgments throughout each article as to whether they should move on or read on. […]

Crisis Management & Crisis Communication: The Justin Bieber Case

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By Gerard Braud In crisis management and crisis communication you must manage the rule of thirds, as it relates to your brand and the management of your reputation. Define the rule of thirds this way: One third of the audience loves you – and nothing can change that. One third of the audience hates you […]

How Public Relations People Judge Success: One Monumental Secret to Achieving More Success in the Coming Year

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By Gerard Braud Public relations and communication professionals on a global basis are experts at creativity. One cute, creative holiday letter I received spoke volumes about how public relations people judge success and the urgent need for public relations people to rethink their approach. The card was a creative spoof of the dreaded “holiday letter” […]

Experts in Crisis Communication Agree: Home Depot Tweet Gone Wrong: 5 Things Your Public Relations Team Should Do Right Now

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By Gerard Braud Experts in crisis communication know social media in corporate communications is highly likely to lead to a crisis. I would say more brands are likely to be harmed than helped by a social media brand page. Home Depot leaders acted swiftly to fire an outside agency and an employee who posted a […]

Lesson 11: Test Your Security Team During Your Crisis Communications Drill

CrisisDrillGerardBraud

By Gerard Braud While working with crisis communications clients, I provide a “first critical statement” template.  This template is intended to be read to the media, emailed to employees, and posted to the web in the first hour of a crisis when little is known about the emerging crisis. Some companies that operate facilities that […]

Crisis Communication Priorities for a Sudden Crisis

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(Writer’s note: Please take 15 seconds of your time to vote for me to win a CNN I-report award for my in-depth storytelling and reporting on Hurricane Isaac.  With your vote, I can win the Community Choice Award. Your first vote is greatly appreciated, but to make an even bigger impact you can vote everyday […]

Gerard Braud – Being Opportunistic – PR Sins of 2009 & How to Redeem Yourself in 2010

As we look back at the sins of 2009 and ways to redeem yourself in 2010, today’s lesson is about how to be opportunistic. Opportunistic means you take advantage of a situation to get what you want. Maybe it is because I grew up in a large family and had to fight my 3 older […]