I appreciate all the many wonderful and wise people who have offered me good advice and tactics for being a better communicator. In a recent pitch, I made the mistake of not approaching each person individually and then compounding it by using the “standard” list configuration from my Internet host provider, which enabled everyone to “reply all” because the list name was placed in the To: field, rather than the Bcc: field. I hope everyone who received multiple emails from me will accept my apology. To those who received my personal apology via email or an apology on your blog, here’s another “I’m sorry.” I hope you’ll forgive my mistake.
Moving on, this incident has given me insights on more appropriate ways of communicating and inspired me to share what I have learned from many positive people.
Thanks to Steve Lubetkin, www.lubetkin.net for his suggestion: Instead of jumping all over the person who made the mistake, how about some practical blog entries about things to be careful of and traps you might fall in that will make bloggers want to dishonor you?
Here’s a sampling of tips.
“When it comes to fixing mistakes, if you’re not quick, you will get flack. Hopefully you will never make a mistake but it you do, make sure everyone knows it was honestly unintentional.” Beth Brody
“Admitting a mistake and pledging to move on is always the best course of action.” Abigail Alger
“Tell it all, tell it early, tell it honestly.” Dave Van de Walle, Area224.com
“Don’t send mass communications from your regular e-mail client. Use an e-mail sending service. They will make sure that each person gets their own copy of the mailing (removing any possibility of this CC/BCC issue) and can even provide statistics on mail open rates and link clicks. There are many companies providing this type of service. As an example, the one I use can be found at http://www.ymlp.com and starts at just a few bucks a month.” Scott Isaacs,
“Try to avoid blast emailing a press release, pitch or any type of correspondence to members of the media without first customizing and tailoring your pitch to targeted journalists and bloggers.
Always keep in mind the differences between “blind copy” and “carbon copy” when sending an email to more than one person.
If something goes wrong don’t wait it out or deflect blame (not saying Ms. Brody did so in this case, but it is important to note). Immediately grab hold of the situation, take responsibility if necessary and even apologize if that’s the best course of action.”
John Sternal, Understanding Marketing
If you do get spam:
“I could have set up a rule in outlook to delete anything with the subject header and I never would have seen any more emails past the first four or five.“
Mike Bawden, BrandCentralStation.com
“Public Relations firms, more than anyone else in the industry, should recognize the impact of unsolicited emails and the importance of permission-based communication in this world of spam.” Douglas Karr
The PR 2.0 landscape- heck, the marketing 2.0 landscape- is evolving and changing every minute and everyone is trying new things and making their best efforts to adapt. Cydney Wuerffel
“While kids can be mean to one another, they can also very forgiving. So too, I hope, are adults.”
Frank Strong, http://swordandthescript.blogspot.com/2009/08/brody-pr-no-wonder-pr-industry-gets-bad.html
Here are some links I found helpful:
About crisis communications, http://communikaytrix.com/about/
How to avoid common mistakes http://econsultancy.com/blog/4473-15-savage-mistakes-commonly-made-by-pr-folks
Social media templates
How to write an apology
How to work with bloggers
Let’s Whine Like it’s 1999
As this is my first blog post, I appreciate any constructive feedback you have. I hope this will become a forum for people to share their “lessons learned advice” with others.