The BLACK paPR Report


PR from an African American Perspective

Colleague to Colleague

happy-new-yearI’d like to wish everyone a Happy New Year and just share a bit about what the Colleague to Colleague section of my blog is going to look like in the coming year. 

Next week, Jonnice Slaughter will bring in the new year with a blog about business strategies for PR consultants and publicists. Christal Jordan-Mims will contribute a blog post about media training and later in the month, Delores (DeeDee) Cocheta will blog about PR and publicity for non-profits using celebrity endorsements and appearances to fundraise and raise awareness. 

You will also meet Keisha McCotry of Prominence Marketing who is going to discuss swag or celebrity gift bags as a publicity and PR tool. 

This section will become more helpful and useful, that’s the goal. 

Best, Robin


Filed under: Colleague to Colleague, PR Standards & Practices, The Business of PR & Publicity, , , , ,

Colleague to Colleague

I’m feeling less than creative today, which could the result of clearing up all of my clutter. This week’s Colleague to Colleague is just a primer about the “father of PR” Edward Bernays. We need to be reminded of our history every now and then, huh?

Filed under: Colleague to Colleague, , ,

Set Your House in Order

Yesterday I posted a status update on that read ‘Robin thinks cleaning and organizing her apartment is a form of pampering. Sick, huh?!’ I do think cleaning and putting things away where they belong is a form of pampering and self-care. One of my colleagues posted on my wall that I could receive more pampering by cleaning her home in Atlanta. A friend was curious; she wondered (on my FB wall) how I thought that, while another friend totally agreed. The exchange offered me an opportunity to articulate something I believe not only my PR/publicity colleagues should know, but something everyone should know.

Years ago, as an undergraduate, I couldn’t sleep and called my uncle in the middle of the night. I was whiny and frustrated. Being incredibly patient with me, my uncle told me to clean out the hidden spaces of my dorm room and then take out the trash before trying to sleep again. His advice worked and I maintain that practice to this day.

If you come into my home, you will find organized drawers, closets and cabinets. No, I’m not anal, but those hidden spaces are in order. is a great online organizing tool and it is free. You can manage tasks and people with this tool.  


Here’s the lesson. When my personal life is uncluttered and organized it makes it incredibly easy to navigate through my professional life. I think clearer and don’t succumb to the temptation of cleaning and organizing things when I should be focused on work, especially since I work from home. I can operate more efficiently when I take the time to do something that brings me peace and above all, order.

Independent practitioners and publicists should schedule in time to put things in order and to take care of themselves. (I’m preaching to me too.) We should:

  • Schedule doctor and dentist appointments
  • Exercise and watch our diets
  • Make time for family and friends
  • Have quiet time alone to hear your own thoughts as well as meditate on spiritual matters

 Last night I went to bed accomplished and slept well. This morning I woke up with a clear head. I don’t know about you, but I can’t live any other way. And I certainly cannot work any other way.

Best, Robin




Filed under: Colleague to Colleague, Help for the Practitioner, Uncategorized, , ,

Colleague to Colleague

Bad stuff.

jonathan_hay_journalistYesterday, I found this article on AOL’s Black Voices (here) about a publicist, Jonathan Hay, who “punk’d” the press and made up the story about singer Rihanna’s alledged relationship with mega mogul Jay-Z. I don’t need to go into the lack of ethics or decorum involved in that act, because most PR practitioners and publicists know better. But, such is the world of entertainment publicity and PR. It’s very different and the rules are different. I’ve met some incredibly moral and highly ethical entertainment publicists who understand that if they do something off-kilter or flat out wrong it comes back to bite you in the butt.  And I’ve met ones like the publicist in question. I found this cute short film on that parodies the entertainment (film) publicity process. Talk about a strategy session.

Do you think stuff like this really happens? No…

Good stuff.

67341158binOne of my favorite colleagues, okay my favorite,  is Jonnice Slaughter of Chatterbox Publicity. She is a contributing writer/blogger for, a subsidiary of is for, you guessed it, PR practitioners and publicists (flacks). Jonnice posted a series of blogs about mobilizing your office and PR services.  Do you know how many wonderful (and free) online services there are to help keep you organized? Well, I’ve provided links below to Jonnice’s three-part blog series on mobilization. You don’t have to be a flack to enjoy them or the services she writes about.


Mobilizing Your Office and PR Services, Part 1

Mobilizing Your Office and PR Services, Part 2

Mobilizing Your Office and PR Services, Part 3

And no, Jonnice, I didn’t get pre-approval on that photo of you! 

Serious stuff.

One of the things I preach constantly about is guarding one’s online identity and persona. I cannot preach it enough in regard to publicists and PR professionals who use, Facebook and other social media to post updates. If your updates are not locked, they become a part of a public timeline easily documented on Google. PR professionals and publicists are in the business of making others look good, not in the business of making ourselves look crazy. I have developed a few rules for my updates:

  • Be engaging but not confrontational or contentious. I never pose a question or make a comment that draws ire or anger. If someone responds to an update with anger, I don’t respond back.
  • If someone irritates me online, I don’t respond. I either avoid them at all costs or delete them from my friend/follower base.
  • I rarely if ever use profanity online. The one time I used profanity I was truly livid about something and then I instantly went back and deleted the comment. The reason I deleted it is simple: Everything I think and feel is not subject to or open to public display. 
  • I rarely if ever direct message or send private messages to people I don’t know unless it is totally business-oriented. And by the same token I use IM or chat applets in the same manner. 
  • I don’t participate in non-clinical sexual conversations online. 
  • I never lie.

Here is a really cute and cool Web article about “netiquette” or Internet etiquette. The irony of me disclosing my rules of engagement is that I’ve encountered almost all of my worst-case scenarios this morning and it’s barely after noon. (sigh)

Necessary stuff.

This week, Rene Syler created a wonderful social networking community, I’ve Been Laid Off, and it’s taking off like wildfire. If you know of anyone in need of that type of network, send them to I’ve Been Laid Off. And if you know of experts on rebounding from job loss, please send them to the site as well. This is obviously a tough time of year to be laid off or fired. In fact, Rene plans to have an online chat and video conferencing session with a psychiatrist on the issue of unemployment and grief. 

Best, Robin

Filed under: Colleague to Colleague, Help for the Practitioner, PR Standards & Practices, , , , , , , , ,