Tuesday, 1 June 2010

Eek yes I am a PR!

Inspired by a great fellow blogger Karin at Café Bebe who recently wrote a post titled PR Wish List in which she talks about her experience with a PR and a call out asking what bloggers expect from PR’s.

I read this with great interest as being a PR myself who is currently on maternity leave I stumbled across the world of mummy blogging thanks to a good friend of mine who is also a PR who told me all about a lovely lady she had met who had set up a fantastic networking site called British Mummy Bloggers.

The lady she had met was Susanna Scot the founder of the site and she also blogs at A Modern Mother and she told me it was something I should really look into. I think she could see that whilst I was enjoying my maternity leave, I was missing interacting with mums in a similar position to me, just having my second child, feeling slightly lost and adjusting to being at home again full time. I was struggling and I needed something to focus my mind on in the evenings and just to start talking to new people as I missed the banter and chat with journalists and work colleagues.

So I checked out BMB and started my own blog, having no technical experience at all and really being totally clueless when it came to anything blog related I have slowly been finding my feet and finding interesting mums to talk to through twitter and reading some fantastic blogs and posts from women from all walks of life.

I have entered a world in which as a PR more used to dealing with national papers and magazines than bloggers I have now realised how important and influential the blogging community can be. I know I have been very slow off the mark with this realisation.

I have been guilty in the past of getting a journalist’s name wrong, mostly by typing far to fast racing to meet a deadline, trying to get as many emails out as quickly as possible, and like many pr’s had the panicky feeling literally the second after hitting the send button and realising what I had done. I would always email straight back and apologise but mistakes do sometimes happen, pr’s after all are human but the good ones should at least acknowledge their mistakes.

I have also been guilty of using PR tools that bring up huge lists for you and let you email hundreds of people at once, we were taught to do this as the first stage of our campaign from a 100 people you may get at least 10 strong leads back, and then from those 10 people you research them a bit further and go in for a more detailed pitch. This is lazy PR but it does happen a lot and is very standard in most campaigns.

At some point in your career though you get to a point when the clients get bigger and you earn the respect of the journalist community and they start approaching you instead of you constantly hounding them.

Whenever I have trained new people I have always taught them the very simple basics:

Do you research – get their names right, look at the magazines and the different sections, make sure what you’ve got to say is relevant and of interest to them before you contact them.

Blogs are becoming a very popular way for PR’s to gain their clients coverage and when I return from my maternity leave in November I am going to make sure that I incorporate blogs into my campaigns.

I want to be accepted by the blogging community; I don’t want them to by cynical just because I am in PR. I am a mum who loves my little girls, I love meeting new mums, I am loving blogging and I’m hoping that in the future I am going to be able to bring my new found friends some great free products to test and trial and of course keep!

In the mean time I am going to enjoy blogging, meeting new people and joining in more of the great blogging activities such as Guest Post Day which I recently took part in and this was the fantastic idea of Erica at Little Mummy.


  1. There is nothing wrong with being a PR. I am a firm believer in that if you treat anyone with respect you get it back. I have had good and bad expeeriances, but refuse to write anyone off just from one contact. We all make mistakes and are only human. Relationships take time to build. I think everyone is learning about relationships with bloggers, it is a new area for all involved in the UK. I am more than happy to chat to PR's and develop a relationship. I dont always say yes, but it is nice to asked!

  2. Great post Madame! I think you've definitely got the right stuff with regards to the Parent Blogging community which will put you in good stead when you return from mat leave. I'll be happy to talk more with you if you like! ;) Great stuff and thanks for the link! :)


  3. Hey a jobs a job and you're not a traffic warden!
    Its nice to meet you (I popped over after reading your comment on cafebebe).
    As a mummy blogger who has apparently just caught the attention of PR's I do like it when they get your details right (I'll only let you into my name on response to an email!)
    It would be nice to know how it works from the other side (not the dark side obviously but over there), how do PR's pick mummy bloggers or do they keep a list and just email all. Or do they pick you from a list??
    Anyway better go now, realised I'm waffling again!!

  4. Great post, being a mummy blogger you will get a great insight in to how we work. PR's and bloggers need to work together, and personally I think us bloggers need to stop bashing the PRs, or the same people that moan about them will be gutted when they stop emailing them

  5. Thanks ladies for comments I am a mummy blogger first, pr second I never thought when starting a blog it would cross over into work but I can see it going that way in future. I'll do a post on what Prs look for just need to ask some pals for up to date info as I'm not specialist in blogging pr yet. Also I'd like to get invited to press days too in my capacity as a mummy blogger!

  6. I can imagine its interesting when so many people diss PR's that you are also one but also one of the mummy blogging community.
    But I reckon once you return to work its going to give you a good boost knowing that you have some good friends you've made through blogging waiting in the wings and there to help and you've learnt how to approach them and such! xxx

  7. Hi, I'm a mummy blogger and PR too and one of Susanna form BMB's partners in the forthcoming CyberMummy conference.
    I've always been totally open about my PR life and in all honesty I have been embraced for being open.
    Neither my blog - nor my Twitter hold any direct link to my PR company yet it is universally known that I am a baby pr.
    I'm kind of hoping that it wasnt me that addressed the email to Karin at Cafebebe as Dear Alison - but I'm also quick to hold up my hands to say that it could have been me... with no malice intended.

    anyway... welcome to mummyblogging PR stylie. It would be great to see you at CyberMummy.

  8. Hi Sian
    Thanks for stopping and commenting, I really hope to be at CyberMummy it would be fab to chat to you there, you seem to have a great work / blog balance!

  9. Only rubbish PRs need to be afraid to admit to the mummy blogging world that they are PRs and I'm hoping you're not rubbish! You mention how a PR should do their research (and get their target's name right) - these little things make a big difference when approaching members of the mummy blogging world.

    I got into blogging as a result of demand from my own real (ie not virtual) friends asking me to pass on my tips on products I had tried out as part of the Mother & Baby awards. I'm aware that there are real people who listen to what I say and act on my advice and now I find that reviewing products on my site is a BIG responsibility. I enjoy working with PRs as long as they understand why I do what I do, and the responsibilities I have to my small, loyal readership.

    Glad you're enjoying the blogging. Maybe see you at Cybermummy.


  10. Nothing wrong with being a PR, not least because by being a blogger you also understand the power of the blog and what it can do and how it needs to be used

    Could be worse, you could be an investment banker (like I was until last month !)