I'm a mom to two fab kids and have the most amazing hubby who helps me balance work and play. You can also find me on Twitter at @JodiEchakowitz.
@EdenSpodek is a great friend to have and colleague to work with. What a perfect choice for #FollowFriday!
1 week, 5 days ago on #FollowFriday: Eden Spodek
I love that over the past few years, we have been able to come to the table and talk about measurement *and* PR in the same conversation. It's great being able to show our clients what kind of impact we are making through the integrated communications/marketing programs we implement.
I also think that the Barcelona Principles are finally helping to shift the thinking of the PR community. I came across this study which shows that there is some progress in our industry, and hopefully that will continue (http://www.prnewsonline.com/featured/2013/04/01/study-shows-pr-pros-making-progress-in-following-the-barcelona-principles-pr-news/). It is sad though to see that some PR folks are still using AVEs (cringe!!) as a measurement metric, but over time, hopefully that percentage will reduce.
1 month, 2 weeks ago on How to Measure PR: Use These Tools
Arik, I think this post covers off everything that all of us solo's have been wanting to say for a long time but never have. Over time I've built a great team of (consistent) virtual consultants that work with me on different client accounts, handling various components of my clients' PR programs together with me. Since doing that, I've found that the opportunity to brainstorm, connect with others and feel less disconnected is greater. They also cover for me while I'm away so that I feel less stressed while away, and can even periodically take a (more) disconnected vacation (although this only tends to happen in December when most companies and my clients are also taking time off... although even then, I typically check email at least in the morning and evening.) But there are still times when I find myself heading off to my local Starbucks so that I can enjoy some of the white noise of people around me.
Despite the downsides, the flexibility that being a solo offers - especially with having kids - is something I love. I try to be more disciplined about stopping work at set times so that I have good quality family time, but it's getting harder and harder to set those boundaries. Often it takes a stark reminder from my hubby to get me back on track.
2 months, 2 weeks ago on 5 reasons why the solo consultant lifestyle isn't all it's cracked up to be
@ginidietrich Don't you hate it when you know there was something else you wanted to say, but forgot what it is?
2 months, 2 weeks ago on Lots of Changes at Google: What it Means for You
At your previous recommendation, I also switched to Feedly and actually far prefer it to Google Reader. I'm going to check out Talk Walker now. Will be good to have another option that actually works the way Google Alerts should have been working.
This is really timely. Earlier this week, a client was considering his options for the distribution of a new product announcement, and I suggested a newswire purely for the SEO value. I also reinforced that media coverage comes from targeted media outreach (we never count newswire clippings as coverage). I plan to share your post with the client as a follow up, but It also gives me food for thought in terms of using a newswire as a news starter. I never thought of it that way, but I would love to experiment with it. I'd love to see some case studies of it being used to tell a story vs. news. Do you have one you could point me to?
3 months, 3 weeks ago on Do News Releases Have SEO Value When Distributed Via a Wire?
Finally! A good response to a potentially damaging situation. We need more positive case studies like this one.
It's a good reminder for all of us that if you have an issue with another person or company, take the time to talk to them about it. There might be an underlying reason why they did something that you didn't agree with. We're all so very quick to react without taking that basic first step.
4 months ago on The OXO/Quirky Debate: What OXO Did Really Well
In addition to getting PR folks to stop being lazy and do their research long before they hit the send button, more of them also need to learn how to push back on their clients and start getting them to think quality not quantity.
4 months, 1 week ago on I Hate PR People: The Rules of Pitching Bloggers and Media
Love this, Arik! "I am a PR pro."
4 months, 1 week ago on So, God made a PR pro
@ginidietrich @belllindsay I agree! Their rules are stupid - and even more so when they aren't applied consistently across every airport.
North American airports could learn a thing or two (in terms of security) from Ben Gurion airport in Tel Aviv. You (unknowingly) go through several layers of security and that's before you even get inside the terminal.
4 months, 2 weeks ago on What Not to Do: Eight Lessons from Airports
@ginidietrich @belllindsay One of my clients provides technology for the airline industry, and changes are afoot in terms of being able to provide services to customers like those you mention, including paying for faster boarding or access to the airport lounge even if you don't have status. The airlines do want to personalize their offers for travelers, but te current systems being used don't allow it. You'd be surprised to know that there are lawsuits related to this so that the industry can move to a model that is more Amazon-like and based on travelers needs and wants. Right now the airline has no idea who you are when you book a ticket so cannot make those offers to you. Blame GDS companies like Sabre, Travelpory and Amadeus for that... Anyway, just thought I would share so that you know what direction things are moving in.
@ginidietrich I don't think I would cope very well with my house being like central station. I take my hat off to you! When I do meetings, I tend to make Starbucks my temporary office instead of having people come over to my house (as I'm in the suburbs, going to a Starbucks somewhere on a subway line is often easier for others).
I love the idea of your Friday mornings. It's something to look forward to each week. Because I have my kids to take care of in the morning, that's unfortunately not an option for me. But I do take a little longer to get up when they're at camp in the summer.
4 months, 3 weeks ago on Getting Things Done: Why Working at Home is Better
I've been working from a home office for 11+ years, and love it. It means that I get in at least 1 - 2 hours of additional productivity each day that would otherwise be spent commuting. I think the best move that I made was converting a bedroom into a true office vs. a makeshift one. We did this a couple of years ago, and I'm convinced that my productivity has improved since then. It was designed to look/feel like a traditional office with built in cabinetry, lots of storage, and an efficient flow based on my work habits. If anyone works from home and can do this, I would highly recommend it.
While my hubby and kids know not to disturb me when my door is closed, I think the biggest distraction comes from other family who don't really equate working from home as being 'real' work, and think that calling several times throughout the day is okay (despite me explaining that it's not). And although I may not have other people to interact with in person during the day, calls with my team happen regularly and social networks have become my (virtual) water cooler.
Gini, your message is spot on, but I suspect that most readers of your blog are either already considering an integrated model or actually living it. The key now is to get the industry at large thinking about it, as well as those that are looking to hire a PR agency or consultant. I think education is critical, and it's great to see folks like @Martin Waxman and @Eden Spodekfocusing some of their time and efforts on education through a new Digital Strategy and Communications Certificate at the University of Toronto's school of continuing studies. It's also time to see organizations like PRSA backing the idea and encouraging the path to an integrated model.
5 months, 1 week ago on The Future of PR: Beyond Media Relations
@KenMueller @belllindsay Ken, I absolutely agree with you. One of my clients uses QR Codes for mobile business cards. Everyone's business cards have a QR Code on it that links to their personal contact info. With one click, people can then download the info into their contacts, link to them on social channels, etc. Just one of the smart ways I've seen them being used.
6 months ago on Six Digital Marketing Trends for 2013
Haha! I think the water got to me... just re-read this part of my comment: "for people so many." Seems my language skills disappear after 5:30pm!
6 months, 2 weeks ago on Is it Time to Breakup With Facebook?
Good food for thought, Amy. The one thing I wonder about Facebook - particular if it does take a nosedive as many of us are thinking - is what will happen to the communities (Facebook groups) that have developed and have become a go to resource for people so many.
For example, I am the moderator/community manager for a Facebook page for a not-for-profit organization (the page is used solely to share information, articles, facts, etc.). I am also the moderator/community manager for this not-for-profit's Facebook group which has over 1,000 members. The members of this group actively use it to get support from others who are facing similar issues, asked the community for advice/feedback, and sometimes to just get moral support when they are dealing with a positive or negative issue. Given that Facebook groups evolved quite some time ago, what are your thoughts on their role when examining the future of Facebook?
By the way, that should be 'shone a light' (not line!!)
7 months, 1 week ago on The Vacation Nation: Unlimited Paid Time Off
You've shone a line on the very sad reality that so many of us have come to know (and struggle constantly to try and change). There is no such thing as working 9 - 5. We live in an always-connected world, which for many means responding to emails at night and/or on weekends (although I know Gini is super disciplined about this and I take my hat off to her), and working on projects after the kids have gone to bed. Despite making sure I take time off for 2 - 3 weeks of vacation each year (usually in the spring/summer and again in the winter) it's very hard to disconnect when I'm away. I have a great team that makes sure things run the way they should and all our clients are well taken care of while I'm out of the office, but I still end up checking email at least once per day while vacationing with my family. It's very hard to let go. Finding the right balance (for me at least) is close to impossible.
I've been using Newsle for a while and agree that it's a great service for many of the reasons you mention above. I never thought to send a quick note of congrats, but that's a great idea!
7 months, 1 week ago on 4 potential PR uses for Newsle