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77 1/2 PR Tips: What They Didn't Teach You in PR School

By® Staff

Originally Posted

Joe Chernov thinks PR is like umpiring baseball: The less you notice the guy doing the work, the more successful he has been. Rather than pounds of proof or "complex algorithms that calculate the number of articles printed, rate of client mentions, and circulation," Joe has the novel idea that PR success should be gauged on the "extent we have helped our clients advance their business."

And that philosophy -- which we happen to heartily endorse here at the CornerBar -- permeates Chernov's first e-book, "77 1/2 Public Relations Tips."

Right amount of attitude


Chernov, the brains behind upper right pr, has written an easy-to-read book loaded with practical tips, in a style with just enough "attitude" that it endears him to our curmudgeonly hearts. Although it claims to be for businesspeople who know little about PR, "77 1/2 Tips" is a fine refresher for anyone in the profession. And you'll probably run across a few ideas that are new, or that are described in ways you'd never thought about before.

We could tell you about the little e-book's contents, but there's enough information on or BooksOnStuff to convince you of the breadth of topics covered.

As we said, we like Chernov's philosophy and the way he expresses it:


  • "Potential clients view us as 'pilot fish' that attach to the most corpulent hosts; journalists view us as 'flacks' that impede their ability to meet deadlines. In many cases, both derisions are correct. In no cases, however, will you find a PR person that admits to these stereotypes."

  • "The first word in 'media relations' is, well, the second."

  • "If you want to read your name in print immediately, you have two options: Place an ad or rob a bank."

  • "Never lie to the press. If you work with a PR firm that suggests you lie, fire them."

  • "The worst PR habit of all: saying too much."

Read the damn magazine

And here's an innovative idea:

  • "When you begin to craft your pitch, begin by actually reading the magazine you are preparing to contact."

Before you say, "Duh!" think of your many colleagues who have decided that reading their target publications is too much bother. It's frightening.

By the way,® doesn't particularly like Tips 74 and 75, but you'll have to buy the book to find out why.

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