Team comment: PR Trick or Treat

We love Halloween here at Jargon PR HQ. Every year the team dresses up, carves pumpkins and finishes the day with drinks at our local pub. This year’s looking a bit different for us all, but that won’t stop us spreading some Halloween festivities.

To celebrate Halloween, we’ve been Trick or Treating (kind of). The Jargon PR team has written down their favourite ‘PR Tricks’ – tips, hacks and advice for PR campaigns, and ‘PR Treats’ – their favourite things about working in the PR industry.

Kevin Winfield, Account Director

PR Trick: Sometimes the key to a great piece of coverage can be a case of pitching the right journalist at the right time. However, as PRs we need to be proactive in this approach. This is where we can utilise the power of social media to track down journalists and what they’re currently writing about. It also enables us the opportunity to directly engage with their content and help build those long-term relationships.

PR Treat: Despite working in PR for almost 10 years, I never get tired of securing national coverage on behalf of clients. Every now and then I sometimes even text coverage to my family Whatsapp group. Shortly followed by a response from my mum asking why my name isn’t mentioned…

Holly Smith, Junior Account Executive

PR Trick: My favourite PR trick is calling journalists and pitching on the phone. It makes it easier to build relationships with the press and makes your story stand out. 

PR Treat: My favourite PR treat has to be getting national coverage for a client. It’s so rewarding as it gets your client wide spread awareness and amplifies their content to a huge audience.

Dani White, Senior Account Manager

PR Trick: My favourite PR trick is a piece of content advice that has stuck with me since the start of my career. Never underestimate the power or proofreading. Not every piece of content will be perfect on the first go and errors inevitably ‘creep’ in (pun intended)! PR is fast-moving and we’re only human, right? Actively taking time to return to a draft with fresh eyes will improve the end result two-fold. This really does speed up the team approvals process and ultimately leads to quicker coverage for your clients! You’ll be surprised at just how much your end-product will improve by simply waiting an hour or two to re-read the content you’ve produced.

PR Treat: It’s a tough call, but my favourite PR ‘treat’ still has to be the feeling when you see a great piece of coverage that you have personally seen through from start to finish. This could be a press release that you’ve curated and sold-in, or even an opinion article you have placed and developed for a client in a top tier publication. The sense of reward and accomplishment when you get to share these pieces with clients is what drives us as PR professionals – and being able to enjoy it with your team makes it all the more worth it. It’s safe to say you will never forget the first piece of coverage you achieve that gives you that buzz!

Katie Ward, Senior Account Executive

PR Trick: Always have a look on social to see if journalists are requesting anything specific – you can find some great contacts that you might not have found otherwise. 

PR Treat: PR gives you the opportunity to be creative and no day is ever the same!

Emily John, Account Manger

PR Trick: My favourite PR trick comes in when trying to decide to send out a press release for our clients. Timing is critical and can often make or break the success of the announcement. We always recommend avoiding sending press releases on Monday – journalists are inundated with emails and are often catching up on news from over the weekend. In our experience, Wednesday and Thursday tend to be a slower news day and work best for client announcements.

PR Treat: The obvious answer would be securing national coverage. However, the biggest highlight of my job is working with and helping our group placements/graduates to get fantastic results on behalf of our clients. At Jargon PR, we have a big group of younger professionals who are just starting out their career and eager to learn as much as possible about PR. For me, the reward is all about helping them build their confidence and setting them up for their career ahead. 

Josie Doyle, Junior Account Executive

PR Trick: My favourite PR Trick would be to always plan out long writing pieces such as blogs and articles. I find it best to section and bullet point each writing piece in a detailed plan with research and statistics you wish to use, so that when it comes to writing the actual piece you’ve got everything you need to get it written in no time.

PR Treat: My favourite PR Treat would be getting a client national or top tier coverage, as it always makes them happy!

Hannah Conway, Account Executive

PR Trick: My favourite PR trick is how to build great relationships with the press. A great way is to put effort into your PR pitches, making sure to personalise each email or phone call with a journalist. For example, picking out a relevant article or story they’ve recently covered to explain why your pitch would be valuable to them.

Once you’ve caught their attention, make sure to maintain your relationship by sharing relevant information and opportunities as well as always deliver results on time.

PR Treat: Without a doubt, my favourite PR treat is achieving national or top target coverage for my clients! Gaining top level coverage takes perseverance and hard work. The client reaction is always a plus and a great feeling of personal achievement.

Luke Smith, Junior Account Executive

PR Trick: My favourite PR Trick is ensuring I sign up for all editorial calendars for relevant publications. It’s incredibly easy when a publication will share their editorial calendar so that you don’t have to go rooting around for it, and when you can keep all calendars in one place so you can tailor your content accordingly, and make sure you’re pitching the right topics to press at the right time. 

PR Treat: My favourite PR Treat is getting an award win. It’s an awesome feeling when you get a win because it is a real seal of approval on the work that you have done for that client, getting it professionally acclaimed, and is always great news to share with your client too! 

Michael Grass, Account Director

PR Trick: Whenever I am about to have a call with a client or journalist who might not be English, I always look up the correct pronunciation of their name online. First impressions have a lasting effect and you’d be surprised how much the person will appreciate the effort you put in to make sure you got their name right. Not only will you appear worldly and well read, you will also come across as a dedicated comms professional who goes the extra mile to ensure you’re providing high standards of service.

PR Treat: I love making people look good, so whenever a client gets coverage they’re proud of, that’s always a treat. If said coverage was placed by a team member I manage and the person in question also gets the deserved praise for the great work they’ve done, then that’s an added bonus!

Lily Fox, Account Executive

PR Trick: Building strong relationships with the press can make all the difference in securing exciting coverage opportunities! Reading the journalist’s articles, as well as interacting with them on networking platforms such as LinkedIn, can help you get to know them better. This also helps when you are wanting to pitch a story or an article, as you know what’s relevant to them and their publication.

PR Treat: My best PR Treat is securing coverage in my client’s top target publications. It’s always a great feeling to have your client happy with your work and achievements!