#PPRAMemberMonday: Debbie Albert

#PPRAMember Monday_Albert

Debbie Albert is the President and Chief Outcomes Officer of Albert Communications. She has been a member of PPRA “forever.” Thanks, Debbie!

Twitter: @AlbertComms

LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/debbiealbert/

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/albertcommunications/

Debbie Albert brings decades of journalism and corporate communications experience to Albert Communications, a strategic communications and marketing firm working with companies to connect and engage with their audiences by developing strong, focused, and innovative actions aligned with their business strategies. Her career has taken her from CNN in DC to 6ABC and CBS3 in Philly, then to the corporate halls of Aramark, and now to her firm. Born without patience, she likes to say she gets sh&t done – fast and well. As you might guess, she’s a whiz at crisis comms.  

PPRA: Who are your clients and what projects are you working on right now?

DA: Most of our clients are B2B, although we work with local universities and other organizations as well. This year, we’re heavily into internal communications for a global law firm, marketing communications for a software developer, crisis communications for companies we can’t mention, and we serve as the de facto communications department for companies who know they need one, but don’t have one in-house. 

PPRA: What is your favorite part of your job?

DA: I love working on my own, building on the great relationships I made while in the news business and in corporate communications. I put together the team each client needs, and that also keeps me very connected with the best of the best in every aspect of communications and marketing. 

PPRA: What was your latest and greatest accomplishment at your job?

DA: Although I’d love to share, I simply can’t. Sometimes keeping a client OUT of the news is much more important than getting then into/onto the news! 

PPRA: What one piece of advice would you give to your fellow PR pros?

DA: Never burn a bridge! It’s a motto that’s worked personally and professionally.   

PPRA: What book or movie could you read or watch again and again?

DA: Movie: “Breakfast at Tiffany’s” and ALL of the Godfather movies. 

PPRA: What’s your favorite spot in Philly?

DA: Hiking in the Wissahickon with my perfect standard poodle!

PPRA: If you weren’t in PR, what profession do you see yourself in and why?

DA: Rabbi. It’s just who I am. (Who wants to come over for Shabbas dinner?)

PPRA: Favorite Philly Food?

DA: Anything Michael Solomonov makes!

Between You and MEdia… with Ayana Jones

As PR professionals, we all know the importance of building meaningful relationships with members of the media – reporters, producers, assignment editors, etc. But how does that happen, and where do you start? 

In this new section of the PPRA blog, PPRA members will share insight, tips and tricks, and fun facts learned from members of the media through informal interviews. You won’t have to wait for our “Media Mingle” or “Editors Panel” to get your tough questions answered and connect with the media. Our goal with this blog section is to continue engagement with our media counterparts in an informative and fun manner. So, between you and me – enjoy!

First published in 1884, The Philadelphia Tribune is the nation’s oldest and continuously published newspaper of the African America community. While the publication has a small staff, the outlet is supported by a strong digital presence, several trademark events, and consistent and accurate reporting.  The Tribune’s longtime business reporter, Ayana Jones, chatted with Bellevue Communication’s and PPRA Blog Co-Chair, Samantha Byles, for this edition of Between You and MEdia.

A native of Philadelphia, Ayana moved to the Virgin Islands with her family in high school. She attended the University of Virgin Islands, where she focused on communications and journalism. After a stint with a local publication, she returned back to Philadelphia, and started her launched her career with The Philadelphia Tribune.


Ayana Jones, The Philadelphia Tribune

How did you get started?  “I started off at the Virgin Islands Daily News, where I worked as an editorial assistant.”

What did you find different about the news culture in the Caribbean vs. here in the states? In Philadelphia? “I don’t think that the news culture is that different in the Virgin Islands vs. the states, other than the coverage being hyper local. The local news outlets highlight news that is happening locally in the community, politics, the educational system, and the business sector. They also run stories about major news occurring stateside and other Caribbean islands.”

What advice would you give PR professionals looking to pitch you? “As a business and health reporter, I am often pitched stories about particular products. I am not interested in product-driven stories, my interest lies in writing personalized stories that are impactful.”

Take us through your story process – What elements do you look for when determining if it a story? Where do you start? “There are a number of elements to consider when determining whether something is a story. I typically look for interesting stories that will resonate with the Tribune’s readership. I try to put a human element to my stories. I often start with the answers to these questions – Is this an issue, person or platform that my readers would care about? Why should people care? How important is the issue? Does this person have a story that would resonate with others?”

What’s your favorite piece that you’ve worked on? “I did an article in 2016 highlighting how Philadelphia is battling the lead poisoning crisis. I enjoyed working on this piece because it highlighted how lead poisoning is impacting children and the measures being taken to address the problem.”

Can you share a fun and interesting fact about yourself? I am a crafter who enjoys creating cards and other items.

Best way to contact Ayana? Via email, ajones@phillytrib.com

#PPRAMemberMonday: Kory Aversa

#PPRAMember Monday_Aversa

Kory Aversa is the CEO/President of Aversa PR and has been a PPRA member for five years.

Twitter: @koryaversa

LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/koryaversa/

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/aversapr/

Kory is an award-winning, seasoned public relations pro, event planner and social media guru with 20+ years experience in the nonprofit and small business sector. He hails from Utica and Albany, New York, and graduated from Utica College of Syracuse University with a Bachelor of Arts in Public Relations (minor Political Science). He represents over 50 top neighborhoods, main streets, tourism attractions, street festivals, restaurants, beer gardens, small businesses, non-profits, theaters, arts organizations, and boutiques. Through working in the neighborhoods, and through work with Philly’s biggest festival, Kory has the privilege and honor of working every single year with hundreds of business owners and artists from Bucks County to Baltimore, from Ardmore to King of Prussia, from University City to Old City, from Midtown Village to South Philadelphia.

After fast expansion in recent years, big-name clients include Parx Casino, Philadelphia Zoo, Sofitel Philadelphia, Christmas Village, South Street, East Passyunk, Ardmore Initiative, Old City District, Piazza Pod Park, Post Brothers, Craft Concepts Group, FCM Hospitality, Philadelphia Theatre Company, Philadelphia School of Circus Arts, The Bercy, Cry Baby Pasta, Evil Genius Beer Company, Philly Loves Beer, Philly Theatre Week, and many others.  

PPRA: Who are your clients and what projects are you working on right now?

KA: Holidays are huge for Aversa PR! We are busy launching all the biggest and best holiday tourist attractions in the city from the new LumiNature experience at Philadelphia Zoo, to Christmas Village at Love Park, to Made in Philadelphia Holiday Market at Dilworth Plaza, to new holiday surprises at Piazza Pod Park, to Holiday Tea Service at Sofitel Philadelphia, to tree lightings on South Street, East Passyunk, Old City City, Ardmore, Craft Hall, Evil Genius. If there’s a tree, twinkling lights, and a Santa, I will probably be there! I am already growing out my beard so me and Santa can match on those cold days. 

PPRA: What is your favorite part of your job?

KA: I love waking up in the morning and knowing that I am helping transform neighborhoods, showcasing our world-class city and helping clients achieve their dreams. PR is so much more than sending press releases, networking and the details – I love the big picture of making a difference in my community! 

PPRA: What was your latest and greatest accomplishment at your job?

KA: It has been a banner year – and every year is bigger than the last. I am so thankful and honored. In particular, I am especially proud to represent five neighborhoods – and represent some of the largest institutions in the region like Philadelphia Zoo, Parx Casino, Christmas Village, Sofitel Philadelphia and Post Brothers. Of particular note this year, I am proud to be the PR for the city’s largest festivals, from Philly Beer Week, Philadelphia Honey Festival, South Street Spring Festival, Philly Theatre Week and more. It’s been an amazing and fun whirlwind and I always step back and say thanks for coverage and our team’s accomplishments big and small. 

PPRA: What one piece of advice would you give to your fellow PR pros?

KA: Always remember why you are in this business – and what you want to accomplish. Know yourself and what gets you out of bed in the morning. Know what motivates you and what is a match for clients and future business – and stay true to that even though outside pressures can come up. If you keep those in mind, you can handle the long days, the pressure, the deadlines and the fast pace. You should be in it because you love it and have something you want to accomplish.  

PPRA: What book or movie could you read or watch again and again?

KA: I wish I had time for movies or books – I work 16 hours a day sometimes, and if it isn’t Law and Order or Modern Family in front of me by Midnight, then I don’t know how I would get by for that downtime they offer me and a second to get out of my head and my work. 

PPRA: What’s your favorite spot in Philly?

KA: I love walking around Philadelphia Zoo – especially on an off-peak time like during the week. It is a great escape and it’s not only fun but so relaxing. I find I can lose myself there and get a mental break from everything else in the world. 

PPRA: Favorite Philly Food?

KA: Being in food PR I couldn’t even begin to name them all – for me it’s about what is my favorite food today and this week.  From staples like a soft pretzel and a Wawa hoagie to amazing global cuisine on South Street, to dim sum at Dim Sum House in University City – I am eating my way around the city every day, all day. At home, when by myself, there’s a lot of pizza that happens. A lot. I have no time to cook.

Guest Post: The PR Guessing Game Is Gone for Good

Brianna Taylor, PPRA member and Director of Public Relations at Garfield Group, shares the benefits of efficient data and analytics to PR. The complete post and its supporting images can be found on the Garfield Group blog.

It’s 2019. And the word of the year is “data” (don’t fact check me on that).

Today, data is as essential to modern marketers as oxygen. But this necessity isn’t always satisfied so readily. Most CMOs and their agencies know that they need data to measure the effectiveness of their programs. But when it comes to measuring PR efforts, there are often questions about what to measure and how to prove a true ROI.

GG_PPRA_Blog Post_Dashboard

PR and Data — Together At Long Last.

According to the 2019 Global Communications Report from the USC Annenberg Center for Public Relations, big data analytics is the top skill that future PR and communications professionals will need to be successful. What’s more, “70 percent of B2B marketers would shift more of their budgets to PR if it could be related to financial impact,” reports Cision.

As a result, the PR industry has been adapting to prove the impact of their programs. It’s why at Garfield Group, we’ve begun to provide our clients with custom-tailored analytics dashboards — readily displaying the metrics that best indicate how well we’re delivering on their communications objectives.

A Portfolio of PR Metrics.

What are the most important public relations metrics? Of course the answer is those that measure success against specific KPIs or communications goals. It’s a customized view of what matters most to an organization. To provide some examples, however, we’ve outlined four of the most common data/metrics categories here:

Media Mentions

This is a simple count of the number of times a brand is mentioned in the media. Media mentions can be tracked over time to show an increase in the company’s “share of voice” in a particular industry and the traction of PR investments.

Media Impressions

Impressions are a measure of how many people “might have” seen the brand in media coverage. This includes calculating the potential audience reached with a given media mention or an entire campaign of clippings. (Note: this is not our favorite metric, because it typically inflates the sense of a brand’s true exposure. It is, however, a metric that clients frequently ask to measure.)

Content Scoring 

This is a real powerhouse metric. Content scoring is a measure of the quality of coverage a brand received. It’s a methodology to derive a true value of coverage – customized to unique goals and measured on a scale of, say, 1 to 10. Such a system might include considerations such as mentions of key messaging or talking points, whether a publication is one of your top media targets, how prominent your brand was in the coverage, and whether or not coverage was positive.

Traffic Generation

Website traffic and social media reach over time — since the beginning of a PR campaign, for example — are good barometers of the value of the PR investment. By including links in contributed pieces, we can also analyze how many website visitors are directly attributed to specific outlets or pieces of content. This measurement can help identify which sources are referring the most traffic to a website.

Everything in context.

Few marketers are throwing their entire budget into public relations alone. So which strategies best supplement investment in measurable PR?  Integrated marketing is the key — crossing traditional boundaries to combine PR with digital media, social media and beyond. (Look no further than how Oreo’s simple but fun Super Bowl tweet blew up. Seriously, look at all the coverage for “dunk in the dark.”) According to the 2019 Global Communications Report, 90% of respondents predict that the relationship between PR and marketing will become more integrated over the next five years.

As always, the key is your needs, your goals, and your vision. It’s essential to applying insightful strategies and creativity to solve problems and then do a great job of evaluating and measuring the outcomes. Only then can you understand how all forms of communications — including public relations, of course — are moving your business forward.

#PPRAMemberMonday: Ike Richman

#PPRAMember Monday_Richman

Ike Richman is the President of Ike Richman Communications. He has been a PPRA member for 27 years and was inducted into the PPRA Hall of Fame in 2005.

Twitter: @ike_richman

LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/ikerichman/

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/ike.richman.9

Ike Richman Communications is a firm that specializes in Public Relations, Media Relations, and Crisis Communications for the Live Sports and Entertainment industry. 

Prior to opening his own communications firm, Richman spent nearly 29 years with Comcast-Spectacor, specializing in Public Relations, Media Relations and Crisis Communications. During his nearly three-decade career, he managed all external communications for the company’s three businesses – the Philadelphia Flyers, the Wells Fargo Center and Spectra. He is well established in creating and delivering important and impactful business messages locally, regionally, nationally, and throughout the sports and entertainment industry.

PPRA: Who are your clients and what projects are you working on right now?

IR: My current clients include Live Nation Philadelphia, Oak View Group Facilities, ABC-TV’s hit comedy, The Goldbergs, Healthy Kids Running Series, Still Strong Foundation, National Night Out and the Ed Snider Youth Hockey Foundation.

PPRA: What is your favorite part of your job?

IR: Helping tell stories for my clients; particularly ones that help them grow their business or brand.

PPRA: What was your latest and greatest accomplishment at your job?

IR: Working closely with Live Nation Philadelphia in helping open The Met Philadelphia.

PPRA: What one piece of advice would you give to your fellow PR pros?

IR: No job is too small and no job is too big. 

PPRA: What book or movie could you read or watch again and again?

IR: Shawshank Redemption

PPRA: What’s your favorite spot in Philly?

IR: There are so many great spots around our city. I love being on Kelly Drive or in a Wawa.

PPRA: If you weren’t in PR, what profession do you see yourself in and why?

IR: Game show host!

PPRA: Favorite Philly Food?

IR: Seitan Wings at Adobe Cafe