Coronavirus PR: ‘Show don't tell’ has never been more important

By Seamus Byrne in Media News on
Show don't tell. Show don't tell. Show don't tell. 
You can't overemphasise it. But there's always plenty of companies who think that in the heat of a crisis they just need to tell us how good they can be at helping us if only we'll listen to their spokesperson.
Let's put it in the simplest terms possible. If your client has only asked you to put them forward to be quoted in stories about the changing face of the workforce in the midst of the coronavirus pandemic, it'd be good to set their expectations to 'stunned mullet'.
I've been flat out writing pieces about remote working. Strategies. Technical solutions. Cultural impacts. The works. The biggest thing I need is real stories about what's changing and how people are dealing with the situation. Case studies. Showing the work happening in real-time.
Yes, case studies are HARD right now in PR terms. It's too soon. There's no way to control the message or know exactly how well it's working. But that's what I'm asked for more than anything else. Examples of people getting on with work thanks to digital environments and tech hardware that is helping them to do whatever it is they do.
I don't want a spokesperson telling me what they're offering or what they're planning to do differently. I want the customers and the clients and the consumers.
Zoom has crushed it as a tech company in this crisis, and at first it was largely not by design. One of the biggest examples of a top down experience instead of the recent history of bottom up tech adoption, it moved from business tool to mainstream consumer usage within a matter of weeks. But they did also step forward to offer something real to schools, removing barriers to entry and adoption to help make this moment easier for those who needed video conferencing solved in new ways.
Australia's Rode, a great audio hardware company with a worldwide reputation for excellence, announced a donation of millions of dollars worth of podcasting hardware to help NSW schools to produce content for students remotely at a high quality.
Instead of this, they could have sent out a press releas talking about how good quality microphones are important in remote work conditions and that their spokesperson is available for comment. Instead they offered value to people who needed a solution, and I don't doubt in coming weeks there might be some interesting case studies of how that hardware has been used.
It's been great to see new initiatives from many organisations. Even online hackathons and events going digital, and the stories of how some of these have enabled people who have never been able to participate before to take part. Stories of how remote has become an opportunity, not just a band-aid.
Video games have been launching early to take advantage of the downtime. Online games have been offering premium access for 30 days, or boosting in-game progression to attract people to spend time in their games. They're not just saying "games are a great way to relax and distract from bad times we can give you some quotes if you would like." They're just encouraging people to play.
As we exit the 'early phase' of this crisis and enter the long middle of whatever is to come, companies should be careful to avoid looking like they're just trying to be visible and focus on what they can do to help. Help customers. Help charities. Help just one person. Do something real. Then maybe there will be a great story to tell about it. Maybe in a few days. Maybe on the other side.
Just remember to show us something real.

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Savvides takes charge of SBS

By Jonas Lopez in Media News on

The SBS network has selected George Savvides as the new chairman of the board. 

He had spent the past month as interim chair following Dr Bulent Hass Dellal’s exit after two terms lasting a total of ten years. His previous management roles include managing director of Medibank and Medibank Private, and chairing World Vision Australia.

Savvides joined the SBS board in 2017 and had led its remuneration committee, then later moved up to deputy chairman. He also works in the SBS community advisory committee.

“Over 45 years, SBS has played a vital role in informing and shaping Australia, not only meeting the needs of multicultural communities and our First Nations people, but helping all Australians explore and celebrate our diversity. It is a truly unique organisation, supporting economic and civil participation, and striving to inspire all Australians to experience the benefits of social inclusion,” said Savvides of his appointment.

“SBS’s role for t

Snow falls anew on Triple M Brisbane

By Jonas Lopez in Media News on

Graeme Snow has signed up with Triple M Brisbane as its new executive producer for The Big Breakfast with Marto, Margaux and Nick Cody.

He joined following a recent recruitment search and will start working on 27 July.

Snow came after three years with FOX Sports Queensland, and prior to that he was EP for former Triple M Brisbane breakfast shows The Cage and The Grill Team Brisbane.

“My time at Fox Sports was truly a fairy tale, from creating a human NRL trophy, to helping Fletch and Hindy survive four days in a bubble tent outside of Suncorp Stadium to being in the ring carrying the Australian flag for the Horn v Mundine fight, I had a ball. COVID19 brought this time to an end, and if it didn’t, the ducks wouldn’t have aligned for this position,” said Snow.

“Returning to Triple M really does feel like coming home. Anyone who has been lucky enough to work there will tell you that it really is like a massive family.”

SEN taps Riewoldt

By Jonas Lopez in Media News on

The Sports Entertainment Network (SEN) has welcomed Richmond Tigers AFL star Jack Riewoldt on board for a new weekly one-hour show on SEN1116, under the club’s partnership with Swinburne University of Technology.

Premiering at 6PM AEST on 13 July, Jack Riewoldt’s Tiger Time will feature Riewoldt’s thoughts on the current season including taking a look at the Tigers’ performance in the previous round. He will also talk with Richmond alumni and fans. 

The show will run for ten weeks.

“It’s been weird not having fans at our games this season, but I’m sure I’ll hear the Tiger Army loud and clear on Monday nights on SEN. I’m looking forward to chewing the fat with some special guests and chatting with listeners who I expect will have plenty to say each week! Hopefully we can turn on some good footy despite the difficult circumstances of this season and keep the conversation nice!” said Riewoldt.

Which-50 bought by Boardroom.Media

By Jonas Lopez in Media News on

Digital content portal Which-50 has been officially acquired by multimedia outfit Boardroom.Media. 

Which-50 editor-in-chief Andrew Birmingham said the purchase agreement was signed late last week. 

The brand and website will be retained as its staff is integrated within the Boardroom organizational structure. 

“We will keep writing the stories we have always written. We will also utilise the Boardroom Media capabilities and incorporate video and other multimedia into our coverage,” explained Birmingham.

“Another change the Which-50 audience should expect is to see a wider range of perspectives in stories. Traditionally we would interview chief digital officers, or CMOs or CIOs in our stories, or founders if they are an emerging business. With the expanded focus expect also to see more perspectives from CEOs, CFOs, HR, risk managers. We always wanted to do this in the past, but lacked the scale to do so.”

The acquisition came months into a pa

Knowing who journalists write for

By Seamus Byrne in Media News on


Following on from the question of having your contact buckets in order last week, and bouncing off Redrup’s 5 Minutes yesterday, there’s an important issue that constantly crops up in discussions with other journalists about what goes wrong in PR pitches.
“Why are you pitching me this? I would never write about this.”
The ‘me’ in that sentence is critical. We know why you’re pitching it. It’s your job.
But if you treat everyone in your contact bucket as exactly the same – a generic list that tells your client you contacted THIS MANY journalists – then you get a reputation as a timewaster that starts to get filtered into our own special bucket… the ‘Ignore’ list.
Journalists are under the pump. Overworked. Underpaid. Time poor. And when I say that I don’t want to discount that PR teams are also under a lot of pressure to move fast and hit targets. But, like those

3MP radio back on the air

By Jonas Lopez in Media News on

The ACE Radio Network has officially reactivated Victoria regional station 3MP.

The network stated that the new 3MP will be an Easy Music station catering to the Mornington Peninsula over 1377AM. It will also be available on Melbourne DAB+, iHeartRadio, and CRA’s RadioApp. 

SEN granted ACE Radio the licence. 

Launching out of Frankston in July 1976, the original station, 3MP Classic Hits, was changed when the Pacific Star Network rebranded it as Classic Rock Radio in 2016.

ACE Radio announcer Emily Canning kicked off the broadcast on Friday night. 

John Vertigan and Julie Strini are hosting The Easy Breakfast, followed by Canning from 9AM to 3PM. Cathy Jubb is on drive and primetime duties from 3PM to 9PM, while Dave Drinkell goes on the late-night run.

Hamilton exits MTV

By Jonas Lopez in Media News on

Lisa Hamilton has bowed out of MTV Australia.

She will be up for freelance opportunities.

Hamilton had been with MTV since 2013, when she came in as writer for MTV Travel Co. She later moved up to writing for MTV Style and MTV News, and later promoted to VJ and editor of

Follow Hamilton on LinkedIn.

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