Competition: Tell your story

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Competition: Tell your story

Tell us something exciting your business is doing and be in to win our help writing and distributing a media release taking your story to the New Zealand media!

Whether you are involved in exciting events, have brought a product to market or have an inspiring story to tell, we're here to help.

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The secret to becoming a newsmaker

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The secret to becoming a newsmaker

Most people won’t tell you this, but there’s one sure-fire way to ensure your story makes it into the media. And it hasn’t got anything to do with how well written your media release is, or the strength of the accompanying photo.

The secret recipe is having something newsworthy to say. That may sound obvious, but as someone who has been on both sides of the fence – sending media releases on behalf of clients and being pitched to as a journalist – I assure you many fail this important test.

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Introducing the art of SEO

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Introducing the art of SEO

Mastering the art of search engine optimisation (SEO) can be a steep learning curve. There are countless theories on how to make sure your website ranks highly when people search for relevant terms online, but while some SEO strategies are on the money, others are so far wrong that they can end up harming your business.

Fortunately, there are some tried and true basics you can use to improve the visibility of your website in online searches. I thought I’d share a few SEO basics learnt from experience (and hours of reading).
 

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Starting your own business - first steps

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Starting your own business - first steps

So you’ve decided to start your own business? For most of us who make the decision to work for ourselves, it’s an exciting if somewhat daunting proposition. There are many things to consider before you take the leap.

The first thing is that you really need to do something you love. As with any creative project, there is little point taking risks if you’re not investing in something you believe in, wholeheartedly

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What does the future look like?

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What does the future look like?

Part of what’s involved in owning a company is trying to gauge what the future holds and what you might need to do to stay in business. And that’s not always easy. Integrating complex and swiftly changing trends into your business strategy can be hugely challenging.

It is, however, a necessary process. Some of the questions you will want to answer include the impact of demographic change on your customer base, as well as the impact of new technologies and future economic trends, both at home and globally.

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Five tips on good writing

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Five tips on good writing

Good writing is one of the hardest things to get right. And in our digital age, it is gradually becoming a precious commodity, not dissimilar to the skills required to handcraft a beautiful piece of furniture.

Good writing goes further than the ability to string words together, or insert a comma in the right place. It is about taking your reader on a journey, by creating a story they will believe and immerse themselves in, from beginning to end.

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Communications trends for 2017

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Communications trends for 2017

As a communicator, you might already know what strategies work best with your clients, where your strengths lie, and where you need to channel your energy.

But you’re probably also keeping your ear to the ground and gauging what developments are impacting your sector. Staying on top of your game and ahead of others is crucial in a field that is both crowded and competitive.

Here are a few trends that will shape communications in 2017.

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This Christmas, add some sparkle to your business

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This Christmas, add some sparkle to your business

Christmas is a time for family and friends, for reflecting on the year that has passed and for winding down. For businesses, it is also a great time to offer a little extra to surprise and excite clients. Creative initiatives during this period can go a long way towards securing loyalty and attracting new business.

So this Christmas, while others are adding tinsel to their trees and buying gifts, why not add some sparkle to your marketing and communications strategy? Here are some ideas you might want to consider:

 

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What will you be communicating this holiday season?

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What will you be communicating this holiday season?

It’s that time of year when most of us are winding down from work and looking forward to a well-deserved break. December 25 means spending time with family and friends, and gathering around a Christmas roast. In New Zealand, the end of the year might mean a longer break than usual over the summer period. Some of us might be staying home, going camping or cycling, discovering new places around the country or revisiting familiar spots. Others might be getting on a plane, exploring new cities and continents.

 

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Timing is important, but so are the facts

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Timing is important, but so are the facts

Being slow off the mark is a recipe for being ignored or criticised, especially as far as the media is concerned, so it’s no surprise that everyone wants to be ahead of the game.

Immediacy and timing are critical to successful public relations. But basing communications solely on timing without proper fact checking can lead to embarrassing mistakes and damage to reputation, as demonstrated by the Republican Party and media organisation Newsweek in the recent US election campaign.

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Seeing is believing: the power of images

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Seeing is believing: the power of images

Good communications is about finding the right words to tell a story. But in a world of information overload, one has to consider the singular power of images.

Each day, we are bombarded with news. Articles, blogs, and editorials flood the Internet. Everyone is commenting on everything, whether it’s on Facebook, Twitter or on various websites where commentary is welcome, encouraged. We are continually assaulted with words. How much do we process, and remember?

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Putting ambiguity in context

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Putting ambiguity in context

I am in search of an ambiguous news headline.

Not just any ambiguous news headline, such as "Missing woman remains found", "Red tape holds up new bridge" or "Squad helps dog bite victim", but an ambiguous news headline where all meanings are actually correct.

I find myself drawn to ambiguity in creative writing, particularly in poetry. It can allow for subtlety in writing, and there’s something about knowing your readers can interpret your message in their own different ways.

However, in journalistic writing, ambiguity can be dangerous.

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