Friday, April 27, 2012

Reporting ANZAC Day: Help Wanted

Sometimes it takes a different set of eyes to provide a fresh perspective on something familiar.  

And so it is with ANZAC Day, arguably Australia's most iconic day when Australians around the world gather to commemorate the lives of loved ones lost in war.

I have worked with journalists helping them to report ANZAC Day for five years.  Each year their questions are predictably the same and often their coverage repeats similar themes.  Each crop of young reporters is keen to get basic details right and a lot of effort goes to educating them.

This year Sharon Mascall-Dare, an independent researcher based at the University of South Australia  has produced an ANZAC Day Media Style Guide. Sharon who has worked with the ABC and BBC brings an independent and experienced perspective to ANZAC Day reporting.

The Guide provides journalists with a concise history of Anzac Day, as well as advice on identifying new story angles and avoiding overused clich├ęs, words and phrases. It aims to be an objective resource for journalists throughout Australia.

Sharon's efforts were backed by a highly experienced editorial advisory board that brought together academia and industry.  The Narratives of War Research Group of the University of South Australia, also provided its expertise to the project.

I along with many others was pleased to share some thoughts with Sharon.

This year the Guide has been well received by the media, and as a living document it will become an even more valuable media tool as we head to 2015, the Centenary of the Gallipoli Landings.

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Why PR Needs Bob Brown

Recently Australian senator and Greens Leader, Bob Brown, appeared on ABC TV's Q&A program. 

For almost an hour he took questions from the audience in the studio and from people on the net.

Brown, who will soon leave politics, spoke with conviction, clarity and force.  No one watching would have any doubt where he stood on the key issues facing Australia.  

Gone were the usual evasive, qualified and hedged comments which are now so common in public discourse. It was eloquent, straight from the shoulder stuff.

You may or may not like Bob Brown's policies, but you must admire the clear and consistent way he has communicated over his political career, irrespective of who he was talking with.

Good luck in retirement Senator.  Perhaps you should become the PR professor at the University of Tasmania and pass along your skills to the coming generation of young PRs and communicators.

Sunday, April 1, 2012

Create Great Events: Podcast

Last week I ran an events workshop for sporting codes and clubs in the Australian Capital Territory.  

Those attending were planning events ranging from  Australia's national fencing championships to the upcoming hot air balloon launch for a major youth organisation.

The conversation was lively: partly because we all agreed events play an important role in the life of most not for profits. In any given year the calendar of most community groups will feature at least one event. 

That's because events provide opportunities to meet face to face with your audience and impress people with your passion. 

This podcast describes planning essentials, especially how to create innovative events that make your organisation stand out and capture attention.

Next week I'll post tips and techniques on promoting your event.  You can automatically get it by adding your address in the email subscription box to the right.