Your job as an editor or writer might not involve any interaction with designers but if it does one day then this glossary might come to your rescue.
I came upon it while searching for a term that a page designer had used in an email to me. Figured I'd look around first and see what they meant before I had to confess my ignorance on industry terms. Luckily, this link came handy!
Moo business cards
Considering I have a service oriented business, and I am conscious about what I print, I limit myself to few marketing tools. I have the traditional business card but I don't have brochures I carry around to hand out to folks, or stickers for their cars! My website and social media links, and my work published online and in print, comprise my marketing tools. I do love my business cards though. They are made with Moo, and everybody who has seen them loves them and always asks to be referred. I use their mini cards which are a great size - half the size of the regular business card, which a lot of people immediately make note of. And you can choose to have multiple designs on your cards, which works great for me. I do not have a specific business logo and so I love the fact that my cards can be in different designs and colors. Again, a great conversation starter when I pull out a bunch of cards all in different patterns and colors and ask people to choose one! They offer next day printing just in case you happen to be in a hurry. Check them out here!
Radio show tomorrow!
I will be a guest of Atlanta Business Radio tomorrow morning! I am excited and looking forward to it. For now all I know is there will be other guests on the show, I am guessing I get about 5-10 minutes of the host's time to discus my work, it will be done with first thing in the morning so I will be happy to share a link to that once I have it! Wish me luck!
Written a book lately?
If yes, then I want to talk to you! I am in the process of writing a book myself and I know for a fact that it's no joke. I am trying to spotlight a few authors who have recently published work in any genre. Print or electronic is fine. The idea is to share with others your story of how you went about writing your book, your choices and decisions, publishing it, the whole nine yards. Be ready to share a lot of information so other up and coming authors can learn from your mistakes and thank you for sharing your wisdom. I am currently looking for authors from Georgia but you could be from anywhere really. Remember to send me a link to your site, and if you'd like, feel free to send me a copy of your book for a review on this site as well.
And so yesterday was the grand night that would decide if I won an award for excellence in journalism from the Atlanta Press Club. It was a lovely evening, the husband accompanied me, a few of my friends were also nominated, there was lots of connecting and mixing and mingling. The impressive Commerce Club on the 49th floor added to the occasion. I did not win the award but it was a great experience, it always feel nice when your work is recognized and it certainly was good to be in the company of so many well-established names from the local publishing and media community. Overall, a great experience, I might just try again next year :)
Press Conference tips
You've been invited to attend a press conference. What next?
Press conferences are usually hosted by organizations or celebrities to announce something that was not known before. Something new. Something that just came up. Something they would like you to write about. Sometimes with just the intention of making some noise and garnering some attention, and sometimes to really get feedback on what they are doing and what people think or feel about it.
If you are a well connected writer, you will probably get the invitation to the press conference directly from the organization or the agency handling the events and public relations for said party. It is typically in the form of an email stating the date, time and venue for the presscon, the speaker/s and who they are - designation, organization, cause, accomplishments, etc. and the topic to be covered at the event. Most times this will have some background on what is being addressed, especially if it is a current issue or a new product, or new features to a product, or a reaction to an incident. Other times though, they try to leave in some suspense and excitement in not telling you exactly what it is about.
Either ways, do some research on the organizations and speakers so you know why you are headed there. If you are really close to the folks that invited you, it wouldn't harm to ask them for a titbit on what this is about. And do confirm if you are attending, yes please do! This will help the organizers tremendously when they have to consider the logistics of the presscon- parking, seating arrangements, food and drink, handouts, giveaways, promotionals, etc.
When you head for the press conference, make it a point to say hello and thank your contact who invited you to the event. Surely they thought you a valuable resource to invite you instead of just mailing you some information after. Look around at the venue and try to get a spot as close as you comfortably can to the speaker so you can focus on what you are there for and you can hear them loud and clear to get pointers for your article. Take notes while they speak and graciously accept any informational fliers or press kits given to you. They usually contain the information you need when you later remember you forgot to note down some details!
If you have questions, just ask, but only if you are aware of the topic at hand. If this is not your subject area of expertise, then better to hold on till you can get back to your work desk, do some more research and then reach out to the agency with your questions as a follow through to your visit. They will usually be very happy to get your answers to you. If you have questions that have not been asked at the presscon by other attendees, then that might make for a good question or two to ask directly to the speaker/s. This way, you will have exclusive sound bytes for your media outlet. Ask your contact to connect you with the speaker/s immediately at the venue itself, or ask if they can be reached later with some questions you had specifically for your publication. Again, most often than not, they will gladly oblige. I am yet to come across somebody that organized a press conference and then refused to answer additional questions!
Most presscons will include some food and drink, maybe some passed bites and beverages. Help yourself to some but don't eat for the rest of the week at this one event! Presscons usually also involve some small promotional gifts for attendees. Usually this is very subtly included in the press kits, but sometimes these are bigger giveaways and have to be presented individually...use your best judgement on whether you want to walk out with that or not. I have had events where these promotionals had nothing to do with the speaker or organization, but were just a way to say thank you in advance if you chose to write about the presscon. I would typically graciously say thanks and leave, but on the other hand, sometimes, those giveaways have to do with the company or product directly, and I would go ahead and take/ask for one just in case it helps add more information to my written piece.
Always arrive with plenty of time to spare before and after the presscon, unless, of course, the news is just so earth-shatteringly urgent, that you simply have to rush out and get it up on your blog or site asap. Keep time to exchange pleasantries with industry colleagues you happen to run into. Certainly try to get a few minutes at the end with your contact who invited you to the presscon. Sometimes, letting them know which outlets you will cover the event for, especially if you are a freelancer, helps them know you did not just come on over for a fun evening! Be professional about it and you will find yourself invited to more such official occasions to write about.
If and when any publications you write for do feature this announcement, be sure to send a link or a pdf image of your article to the agency, individual, organization, or speaker - whoever your contact is, so the exercise comes full circle. They know to trust you now as someone that will try to get them exposure to the audiences they are targeting. And you can rest assured they will keep you top of mind for other stories that can get you a byline in your desired media outlets.
Gifts for Editors
Show your editor some love, they do a great job remembering you for a story assignment and coordinate details with you for your article, so check out some of these gifts here which I am sure any editor would love to be at the receiving end of!
APC Award finalist me!
No this ain't no April Fool's joke 'cos I simply would not fool around about something like this. I am happy to share that I am a finalist for the Atlanta Press Club 2013 Excellence Award in the print non-daily category. Was on vacation for a few weeks and completely did not expect it when I received the email congratulating me for being shortlisted as a finalist. It feels great to be in the good company of other members from the Atlanta press community. The APC is hosting a reception soon to announce the winners, so wish me luck and I will keep you posted on the results. Meanwhile, here is the link to the article that got me nominated for the award.