Wednesday, December 23, 2015

Tis’ the Season for sharing and caring

By: Cole Buergi, Vice President, Leonard & Finco Public Relations

With the holidays upon us, now is a great time for your company to be thinking about how it can help others less fortunate,

There are numerous organizations doing amazing work with limited staffing and, often, less of a budget. Volunteering by you and your staff is a great opportunity to make a huge difference to so many, including your own team of employees. Volunteering is a huge help to many organizations and is a great way to build team comradery. It’s also a powerful reminder to be thankful for what you have as you get to see firsthand that not everyone is as fortunate, which is often forgotten as we go about our daily lives.

If volunteering doesn’t work, consider taking up an office collection for a worthy cause. This could be in the form or money, food, clothing or personal care items. Budgets are often tight for work and many organizations work to stretch every dollar to the max. A donation of these items can make all the difference.

There also might be some media coverage opportunities for your company’s kindness. It’s good to highlight these activities. Not only will it help show your company’s commitment to the community, but it also helps spotlight a need within the community and may encourage others to do the same.

From the team at Leonard & Finco, we wish all of you a happy and joyous holiday season!

Thursday, December 17, 2015

What? You Should PLAN Your Social Media?

By Kristen Paquet, Sr. Account Executive, Leonard & Finco Public Relations

I know. In a time where everything posted and shared on social media seems to be so random, having an actual plan seems to be a bit out of the ordinary. But if you are a business and you want to leverage everything social media has to offer, having a plan in place will be the key to success.

Where do you begin? Start with the end in mind. What goals do you want to be able to measure and see if all of your efforts have paid off? Keep in mind that your goals may be different from one social platform to another. Once your goals are in place, you can then start tackling a plan of how you will meet them.

One way to develop a plan is to create a spreadsheet that organizes each month. For each month, include a focus area so your team knows what type of posts need to be developed. Each month should also include the dates you will post, if there is a link to include, what image or video should be included, what platform(s) the update should be posted to and who is responsible.

Other things to consider as you develop your plan:

  • Determine who will be involved in seeing the plan through. Not only will this share the responsibility of executing the plan, it brings variety when creating content, keeping things fresh.
  • Be specific. The more specific you can be with posts during the planning stage, the easier it will be to execute the plan during the year.
  • Be sure your measurement tools are in place. How will you measure your success? Most social platforms offer statistics, but what about your website? Be sure you have monitoring set and ready to go so when it comes time to evaluate you’ll have all the information you need.

Developing a social media strategy starts with a strong plan. It can take some trial and error to hone in on getting the right message to the right audience, but with a good team, solid content and a plan to provide direction, success will come sooner rather than later.

Wednesday, December 9, 2015

Lessons Learned as a Public Relations Intern

By: Ashley Vickney, Intern, Leonard & Finco Public Relations
With graduation looming and Christmas almost upon us, my time as an intern at Leonard & Finco is quickly coming to a close. The past seven months here have taught me almost as much as the past three and a half years of college have. With that in mind, here are the top five lessons learned as an intern.

Public Relations is about the clients: When looking at practicing public relations it’s important to look at what works for each client. This was my first agency public relations internship and I had never had the experience of working on multiple client accounts. It’s easier said than done, but just because something works for one client doesn’t mean it will work for another. Knowing your client and their industry well will help you the most!

You are the public relations professional: While it’s easy to get in the habit of just asking the client what they want, it’s important to take a look at what they need. As the professional, you are the expert and it’s especially important to remember that when a client asks you to do something that isn’t a good idea. They hire you to be the expert, and it’s important that you keep that in mind.

Take advantage of what is already there: Some of our clients already have a very loyal fan base, or are doing some great programs. It’s important to highlight what they’re already doing and leverage their existing fans. Don’t reinvent the wheel, rather take what your client is already doing or has and expand on that!

Client relationships are key: Many professionals put in a lot of time and effort into attracting new clients; however existing clients are just as important. Scheduling lunches, emailing and calling your existing clients regularly will help keep the relationship healthy and may even bring in more business for you.

Passion changes everything:  As a soon-to-be graduate I am very biased towards the fact that I have found a job that I want to do the rest of my life. What I have learned here at Leonard & Finco is that passion changes everything. Each person here has a passion for public relations, and doing the job to the best of their ability. Our clients are passionate about what they do, and it shows in their work. As I begin my career, I can only hope that I get to continue to work in an industry I am passionate about.

As I look to graduation and what lies ahead, I am grateful for the experiences that I have had here at Leonard & Finco. One last piece of advice to other college students, make it a priority to have internships before your graduate. Knowing that what you are studying is what you want to do after college is satisfying, as well as gives you the opportunity to figure out exactly what you want to do.

Wednesday, December 2, 2015

The Holiday Spirit

By: Susan Finco, President, Leonard & Finco Public Relations
Well, the holidays are here. I’m among those who really, really like the holidays. Kicking things off with Thanksgiving and then cruising into Christmas and New Year’s (with my wedding anniversary on New Year’s Eve). What’s not to like? 

Apparently, if you peruse social media, there’s a lot not to like; a lot of things to be angry about. And to that I say, “Bah Humbug!” There are all sorts of people posting about perceived snubs by people who don’t say “Merry Christmas” or by those who are offended by people who do say “Merry Christmas” or “Happy Hanukah” or whatever holiday they celebrate.
To me, the great thing about America is that it allows for religious freedom. At the heart of it, no matter what our beliefs or religion (or no religion at all), we all pretty much want the same things in life: health, happiness, friends, family and the ability to live our lives in peace. If there’s a day or time of year when we reflect on that and are happy about it, that’s a good thing. There are a lot of REAL problems in the world that have nothing to do with someone saying or not saying "Merry Christmas."

If someone says “Happy Festivus” to me, I’m not offended. I will smile and say thanks. It’s the spirit in which it’s offered that matters. So however you choose to celebrate, I say good for you and I hope you enjoy the holidays. Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!