Do not read this blog

 

NEWSLINE MEDIA LIMITED

 

Well, aren’t you a little rebel, we’ll get along just fine!

Now I have your attention it’s my job to keep it and nobody likes a dull blog…so let’s do this in verse.

Every day is a school day, so they say,
You want to improve your skills, but there are obstacles in your way.
Then it’s too late when you speak to the media or make a presentation,
And the mere thought makes you want to go into hibernation.

But there’s no need to be afraid, and not want to step forward,
Take fate into your own hands, be confident and not awkward.
Be a brave company spokesperson on the evening news,
Be brave enough to publicly outline your views.

Who wants to endure boring and dull classroom training?
Not us, and that’s why our media and presentation courses are far from draining.
We create realistic crisis scenarios that will keep your attention.
And our media experts will ease your tension. (honest!)

As journalists, TV presenters and camera crew, we know the secrets of the trade.
And by the end of your day with us, you’ll not be afraid.
You’ll love journalists and be a great spokesperson for your organisation.
And you’ll be desperate to address the nation or deliver that next presentation.

Yes, we’ll put you through your paces and ask some tough questions,
We may film you, and come back with improvement suggestions.
But trust us, in our relaxed environment, you won’t feel the stress,
You’ll enjoy every minute and learn a lot in the process.

We’ve trained oil and gas experts, airport staff and business owners on demand,
And Government teams, bookmakers and even The Church of Scotland!
Our team delivers the training needs of each and every client,
We tailor our courses whether you’re an individual, or a global oil giant.

So forget your usual boring classroom style learning,
Have a chat with us for the type of training you’re yearning.
There’s no point in approaching lots of companies to put them to the test,
You’re wasting your time because Team Frasermedia is the best!

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Are you a giver or a taker?

FM blog.JPGIt’s easy in business to roll with the good times and batten down the hatches in the tough times and, as the well-known saying goes, charity begins at home. Right?

Well, I’d disagree. Although in business you have to manage your cashflow and look after your internal interests first, it’s also important that you don’t become self centred and just constantly take, take, take, as greed is a very unattractive trait, not just personally but on a corporate level too.

It’s been a tricky few years for many to navigate, and charities have not been immune to the effects of the economy. I understand, most of us just can’t offer the same level of financial support as before to charities but there are many other ways businesses can still work to give, give, give.

We’ve been ten years in business and right from the start there has always been a determination to give something back to the community that we benefit from. Regardless of the size of a business, corporate social responsibility is not only about supporting charities, it’s about encouraging teamwork, boosting team morale and showing your clients and potential clients that you have a sense of obligation to do the right thing.

So, what can you do to help? Well, here’s what we do.

We are currently working with a local business to deliver PR and event management services to North East Sensory Services. As part of that, the company sponsors our time and we also add in additional time to give the charity even more support to grow their brand. One of our team has also ran in races and taken part in events to raise money for NESS, giving something back on a personal level too.

I’ve also been heavily involved in a committee which organises a huge ladies event in Aberdeen which has so far raised more than £½million for Action Medical Research. Here, I donate a huge amount of personal time and some business resources to help organise the event and each year we raise around £100k, which is a phenomenal boost for the charity.

With a base in Inverness, it was important to me that we were also offering a level of support up there too, therefore we donate a day a month PR time to Archie Highland to help them continually keep the profile raised which helps with their on-going fundraising activities. As a thank you to us, the charity has a Frasermedia room at the fabulous new children’s unit at Raigmore Hospital, which is a lovely accolade to my team.

In addition, I’ve donated my time to MC many a local charity event, waiving my fee, and sold hundreds of raffle tickets.

In the good times, it’s easy for us all to donate an auction or raffle prize but in tougher times there are definitely other ways to support our charities and some would argue more rewarding ways!

So, do you want to be a giver or taker? I know what we choose at Frasermedia and from a PR point of view, it’s good for your reputation too.

Senior PR Account Executive/PR Account Manager (Inverness)

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Do you love PR?

Do you love working with fantastic clients?

Do you love the Scottish Highlands?

Yes? Well, it’s time to join a creative, award-winning PR team.

We have a rare opportunity for a driven, self-starter to join our team as a Senior PR Account Executive or a PR Account Manager, depending on experience.

The role is currently part-time and you will be based in our modern Inverness office.

You will be responsible for looking after our PR clients in the Highlands and have a flair for developing and delivering creative and eye-catching PR campaigns. We work with clients in a variety of industries, so every day will certainly be different!

You will need to be a good communicator who is confident in dealing with company owners and directors and excellent writing skills is essential.

The role will also give you the chance to attend local networking events and develop the Frasermedia client base in the Highlands. The ideal candidate should have previous PR experience working directly with clients or a background in journalism – both would be even better!

Joining our friendly team, you will need to be creative and focussed on generating regular client media coverage and generating fresh, vibrant ideas to raise profile and brand awareness for our growing list of clients.

Key responsibilities would include: working directly with individual PR clients, writing concise, accurate press releases and generating fresh angles to target specific local and international media, creating and delivering eye-catching PR and marketing campaigns, building media relationships and attracting new client accounts.

Job requirements

Including but not limited to;

Previous PR experience (minimum 2 years)

PR or Journalism qualification

Excellent writing and communication skills

Excellent English grammar, punctuation and spelling

Excellent time management

Confidence to liaise directly with clients

Ability to meet tight deadlines

Must be efficient, organised self starter

Key team player

Journalism skills preferred

Good knowledge of social media

Good media contacts

Willing to work flexible hours on occasion

Must be presentable, enthusiastic, creative and hard working

Closing date for applications – Friday 22nd September 2017

Email you CV to pauline@frasermedia.co.uk

We didn’t half show them

36902101081_7e1bbec07a_o.jpgFor the past two years I have watched business people with their shoulders hunched and head down as they drag their feet along West End pavements, the effects of the market in the city etched clearly across their faces.

However, welcoming visitors from across the globe to our city for Offshore Europe this week appears to have given us a kick up the backside, as we’ve pulled our shoulders back, held our heads high and proved what a resilient bunch we really are.

Anyone who ventured around the show, or attended any of the seminars or events couldn’t fail to feel the air of optimism, not only at OE but also around the city. The show may not have been the same scale as previous but it punched with positive vibes. Our city has been buzzing all week…well into the early hours!

Yes, we have shown visitors that we are well and truly open for business, and that resilience and enthusiasm will work towards giving the industry confidence in the businesses, skills and expertise that we have here in the North-east.

Now, as the show draws to a close there will have been good business done, deals agreed, potentials in the pipeline and many a hangover, but it’s important that we don’t quickly forget the positive vibes.

Let’s not fall back into that two-year habit of dragging our feet and gazing at the pavement, let’s keep our shoulders back and our heads held high and benefit from the vibe left from another successful Offshore Europe.

So, what now for your business after spending the past week introducing yourself to your target audience? Are you just going to head back to the office, hope they remember you and wait for the phone to ring?

Or are you going to keep the momentum going and start to really ramp up your business profile so those contacts you made will have little chance of forgetting who you are and what you could bring to the table?

I’m guessing most of you are swaying towards option two. If so, here are five suggestions to get you to the next step.

  • Firstly, don’t do it yourself. Talk to a professional PR/marketing company and get the support you need to grow your business – leave it to the experts and then you can spend your time doing what you do best.   Your company reputation is priceless, don’t undervalue an experienced PR pro.

 

  • Set goals and targets and build a PR plan with your PR expert. There has to be a structure and any PR and marketing should work in conjunction with your growth plans.

 

  • Work out if you would like your PR pro working remotely for your business or if you would prefer them to work in-house with you. Most agencies can offer both options.

 

  • Think about a budget and how much you would like to invest in PR, marketing and advertising. A good PR pro should have good media and advertising contacts to help you get the most from your campaigns.

 

  • Find someone who is not only skilled and experienced in PR and marketing, but someone that you can work well with. Business is all about relationships so you need to be able to trust each other, respect each other enjoy working with each other. PR doesn’t work if communication is poor, it’s a two way process.

So, it’s now up to you whether you want to go for it or continue with the doom and gloom!

As we’ve seen this past week, there’s a whole big world outwith Aberdeen and all those visitors came to our city to support us and support the industry, so let’s get back to it and shout about the fantastic businesses and business people we have.

Shoulders back, heads up!

Pitching for business is no joke, so don’t be an unrehearsed stand up

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As the Edinburgh Fringe draws to a close, the funniest one liner has been revealed and, let’s be honest, it’s just not that funny.

Ken Cheng’s line – “I’m not a fan of the new pound coin, but then again, I hate all change” – doesn’t really split your sides and he’s a professional.

One of the most common questions I am asked when I deliver pitching and presentation skills to various business professionals is whether someone should add in a funny quip to lighten up their presentation.

My honest opinion is to leave comedy to the professionals because, as we’ve found out through Ken Cheng, even they can get it wrong sometimes and they are literally getting paid to be funny.

Stand up comics are rarely unrehearsed and if you are delivering a presentation, whether it is internal or pitching for new business, you should never be unprepared or the joke will be on you.

No-one wants their presentation to be remembered for all the wrong reasons, so I focus a lot on encouraging delegates to rehearse, rehearse and rehearse.

I have trained a variety of business professionals in the art of delivering better presentations and it doesn’t matter which industry you are in, if you turn up with just an idea of what you want to cover and a pile of slides to bore your audience with, you will absolutely not perform to the best of your abilities.

My background is in broadcast journalism and I never once presented the news or reported live from location without a good amount of preparation and rehearsal. The same goes for any event that I host – I never just waltz onto a stage and hope for the best. The most slick of performances are never by accident.

What would be even worse than trying to deliver a presentation unprepared would be trying to deliver a stand up comedy act unprepared in an attempt to win your audience over and cover up your poor presentation. Here’s some advice – don’t, just don’t!

What you should do, however, is realise that delivering good pitches and presentations is a learned skill and with the right one-to-one presentation skills training you can transform from pitch poor to pitch perfect.

Now…back to the Edinburgh Fringe….here’s Frasermedia’s favourite by Adele Cliffe – “As a vegan, I think people who sell meat are disgusting; but apparently people who sell fruit and veg are grocer”.  Boom Boom!

Mind your own business

NEWSLINE MEDIA LIMITED

No-one likes other people getting involved in their business, whether professional or personal, but it seems that some just can’t help themselves….and dare I say it, in recent times, Aberdeen’s business community has developed a terrible reputation for spreading unwarranted rumours about competitors.

I get it, it’s a tough market out there but when I hear about a client’s competitor telling people they’ve gone into administration so they can steal contracts or advisors in a local business support organisation telling their clients that someone they’ve engaged is expensive compared to others in the market, it is nothing short of underhand, dirty politics.

We’ve all faced ‘interesting’ times for the past few years, however, I recall at the very start of the downturn one of our most highly respected local businessmen, Sir Ian Wood, called for ‘collaboration’ and encouraged companies to work together for survival.

That word ‘collaboration’ has been misconstrued by some as cut throat, an opportunity to dispose of competitors and a green light to ditch business morals. Well, shame on you.

Having managed my business for ten years, I have never bad mouthed my competitors and never approached my competitors’ clients and this is a moral that I have instilled in every single person that has been in my Frasermedia team over the years. I always think that keeping an eye on your own business and looking ahead is much more profitable than looking over your shoulder at what your competitors are doing. Simply put, mind your own business!

If, like one of our clients, you do find yourself the subject of this dirty Aberdeen politics, there’s nothing like a good bit of PR and a brand awareness boost, which will not only make your nemesis look foolish, it will likely attract new clients more interested in your services than what your competitors are saying.

But don’t shoot from the hip with your PR and don’t try to do it yourself to save money. We’re all trying to make savings but PR is about company reputation and if you value that then you should place value on any PR that you do to promote your brand.

We work with all of our clients on a regular basis ensuring we are rolling out consistent, positive messages and they all have various budgets so it’s not a one size fits all.

So, when I say, ‘mind your own business’, I mean keep an eye on your own ball and don’t get into playing games with your competitors as someone will lose and you risk it being you!

Instead, focus on your own score sheet, focus on raising your profile and continuing to build your own reputation to attract new business. Point scoring is a loser’s game and no-one likes being a loser!

 

Gloves off – win votes against your opposition with the politics of PR

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It took us all by surprise as we were plunged into election countdown, now we’re in the height of vote winning fever before the country goes to the polls and business leaders should sit up and take note of the politics of PR.

As politicians literally scramble to get their campaigns off the ground, it’s a lesson that your business PR campaign should always be ready for action, well prepared, planned and then executed to perfection.

Let’s face it, no-one wants to be a step behind their competitors, everyone wants to be in Theresa May’s position…top of the tree, ahead of the game and surprising your opposition.

As we begin to feel some cautious, positive changes in the North-east market everyone in business will be beginning to tentatively consider improving their brand awareness and you don’t want to be last to the party.

In the run up to the election, every party will be on the charm offensive and, sometimes the defensive, but in business, there’s no need to pose with a baby or throw your competitor under the bus. There’s nothing wrong with taking the gloves off but be sure your campaign to raise your brand is more perfectly manicured than bare knuckled.

Rather than winning votes, any PR campaign should be aimed at securing new clients and like the election campaign, you have to blow your own trumpet to get the results.

When it comes to choosing the best PR person for your business, it’s identical to an election with everyone trying to convince you they’re the best person for the job!

So, how do you separate the facts from the fiction and choose the best spin doctor for your business?

  • Ensure they have vast skills and expertise in their trade and they’re not just doing their own PR job
  • Don’t just listen to their self proclaimed PR puff, ask for evidence of successful client work
  • Media contacts, aka the PR pro black book, is essential for any good communications expert. It’s who you know after all!
  • Ensure they are well informed & up-to-date with industry news & competitors as they will be better placed to generate ideas to raise your profile
  • Make sure they are passionate about what they do and have a genuine interest in building your business. They should want to become part of your team and not just be interested in their fee.
  • They should be asking the right questions about your business goals and KPIs as any PR campaign should be aligned to help you deliver your goals
  • Finally, make sure they have a personality! You have to work closely with this person and share your vision, so you must be able to trust them and get on well with them. You should be in for the long term not the short term.

As a business, you don’t have the deadline of a looming election and, unlike politicians, you shouldn’t just be focussing on raising your profile when you’re trying to beat the competition.

You can’t create a brand profile overnight, it should be an on-going strategic plan in action and if you are always focussed on building your reputation, you will always be that step ahead of your opposition and in a good position to react when you’re vying against them to secure a potential client’s vote of favour.

Don’t be like a politician and bring out your best side every few years, invest in your brand profile and let your qualities shine all the time to help secure on-going business victories and the leaders position in your field.