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Use a PR Agency to Promote Your Event

Anyone planning a community event should consider using a public relations agency to help promote the event. By nature, a community event is a public event, and in the interest of maximizing attendance and participation, public relations tactics must be employed. Of course you can perform the PR functions and promote the event yourself, but the best results are achieved when hiring the pros.

Below is an outline of some key benefits to hiring a public relations agency to promote your community event.


* One of the best ways to get the word out about your upcoming community event is through the press and media. A public relations agency will have established relationships with key reporters on not only a local level but nationally as well.

* Utilizing their contacts to promote (companies, brands, events, etc.) is the lifeblood of PR professionals and agencies. Because of this, they tend to be strategic, on the ball, and focused on the end result.

* Using a public relations agency to promote your event will increase your likelihood of getting coverage in local and/or national newspapers or on television or radio news programs.

* Because information coming from known and trusted news sources is more credible than obviously paid advertising, members of your community are much more likely to take note of your event than if they were to find out about it through paid advertising.

Event Planning

* Ideally, you should sign on with a public relations agency early in the event planning stages. Doing this will ensure coverage by long-lead media and is a must if your event is expected to have a very large turnout or is held on a national or international basis.

* Even if you plan to do all of the planning for the event in-house and handle all the details internally, a good PR agency will be able to help you strategize every aspect of your event to maximize promotion not only of the event itself, but also of your organization. A public relations agency will help you strategize an appropriate mix of promotional activities, including but not limited to:

o Sponsorships
o Program launches
o Analyst tours
o Media tours
o Press conferences

* A good PR agency will gravitate toward promoting your organization (in addition to the event) just because it is in their nature.

* Most public relations agencies have event planning and event marketing capabilities. If you are operating on a large scale and expect mass media coverage, you will be well served to have an experienced agency ensuring everything runs smoothly at the event with regards to accommodating the press. If you are on a budget, however, you can likely choose the promotion services you need the most on an "a la carte" basis.

Message Makers

Public relations agencies are typically comprised of many different levels of corporate communications professionals. For this reason, having a PR agency promoting your community event can come in handy when it comes to your event materials. Consider having the agency develop your marketing materials to ensure that your message and tone are consistent and appropriate for your target audience. If the PR agency is involved from the beginning of the planning process, they can be instrumental in developing invitations, flyers, posters and more. Keep in mind, creative resources of a public relations agency are likely to be more extensive than your own. If you plan on hiring a PR agency to promote your community event, definitely leverage their creative strengths.


Great Managers Attract (and Keep) Great Talent

Widespread research suggests that people do not leave organizations; they leave their managers. The implication of this finding is that managers who are respected and seen as supportive of the people who work with them are indispensable to successful organizations. Without them, competent people may leave their current organization in search of better treatment. The resultant costs of recruitment, engagement and subsequent retention can be enormous. Less tangible are the indirect costs associated with the loss of corporate intelligence and the impact on morale.

I ask participants in management workshops to isolate the characteristics of individuals with whom they have worked who they deem to have been exceptional managers. Their answers seldom focus on the educational background or technical capabilities of those people. Instead they emphasize that exceptional managers are passionate, have vision, are caring, treat people supportively, make work fun, challenge people to be their best, provide lots of feedback, listen intently and encourage teamwork. Traditionally, these skills have been labelled, somewhat pejoratively, as the "soft skills". The insinuation is that they are "touchy feely", too mushy for the real world of work and, in some instances, even inappropriate in a "professional" environment. My experience contradicts this and supports the thoughts of Roger Enrico, former CEO and Chair of PepsiCo, who says that "the soft stuff is always harder than the hard stuff".

Successful organizations must invest in developing the skills that are critical for the managers of their people to function effectively. What are they? For many years we have taught managers that they need to provide clear direction, to communicate better, to vary their management style to fit individuals' level of development and to attempt to engage people in the pursuit of the organization's raison d'etre. These skills have certainly helped managers to become more productive. But there is more...

In the mid to late 1990s the topic of emotional intelligence gained prominence in management literature. Research at Harvard suggested that emotional intelligence was at least four times as critical as a predictor of success as either IQ or technical skills. Another study at the Centre for Creative Leadership indicated that for successful managers, emotional intelligence is nearly five times as important as their IQ or technical skills.

Emotional intelligence is the ability to effectively perceive, manage and use one's emotions and to effectively manage emotional connections with other people. While there are eleven components of emotional intelligence, I will only mention a few.

To maximize the contribution of our people and their talents, research into emotional intelligence says that we must support managers as they develop skills in a variety of areas. These include helping managers learn to: assess their strengths and weaknesses; manage their strong impulses; remain optimistic in spite of severe challenges; listen more effectively; become more adaptable to rapidly changing conditions; become more emotionally self-aware; and demonstrate empathy. Managers who refine these skills will be seen as more authentic by those they lead. The outcome will be more people who feel that they are respected and valued by their managers. Under these conditions, people are more likely to be fully engaged in their workplace and to contribute their maximum effort for their manager. They are also less likely to shop the market for other opportunities.

Undoubtedly, effective managers are indispensable to successful organizations.

"the soft stuff is always harder than the hard stuff."
"Emotional intelligence is nearly five times as important as IQ or technical skills."


Most Popular Sizes of Banner Stands

When you attend a trade show, you may notice that your eye is drawn to the booths that have banner stands. That's because banner stands provide an extremely noticeable visual display that attracts passersby. Banner stands are a great enhancement to any trade show display and provide a high-end, professional impact for a reasonable price.

There are several different types of banner stands on the market today, but there are a few types and sizes that stand out in popularity. What are the most popular banner stand types? Why do certain sizes of banner stands have more of an edge?

Sizes of Table-Top Banner Stands
Considered an entry-level banner stand, table top banner stands provide the impact of a banner at a reasonable price. They come in a variety of formats, and they offer a great way to add visual appeal to your table-top display.

Popular sizes of table-top banner stands include 24 inches high, 18 inches high, and 42 inches high. Choosing the right height for a table-top banner stand depends on several factors, such as price and portability.

However, the most important thing to consider when choosing the size of your table-top banner stand is how the size will fit with the rest of your display. You don't want the banner stand overwhelming the rest of your materials.

Sizes of Roll-Up Banner Stands
Roll-Up banner stands provide the ultimate in banner stand portability. The banner rolls up or down on the stand and offers very easy setup. To set up the banner, you simply roll it out and connect it to the other end of the stand.

Some of the most popular sizes of roll-up banner stands include 78 inches high and 84 inches high. These sizes are large enough to get noticed and are easy to read from a distance, both important features for a trade show display.

It's hard to miss life-size banners at a trade show. Even though they cost a bit more than table-top versions, they really draw people in.

Choosing the right size of roll-up banner stand is really a matter of budget. In general, the large the stand, the more you have to pay. However, it's also important to consider the visual impact of these larger stands.

Sizes of Tension Pole Banner Stands
The main advantage of tension pole banner stands is that minimal hardware is seen on the front of the banner, allowing the main focus to be on the graphic. Surprisingly, this option is less expensive than many other banner stands and is a more practical alternative for some companies.

A disadvantage of these type of banner stands is that the banner must be unrolled manually, causing the system to have a shorter life span than some other banner stands.

Popular sizes for tension pole banner stands include 48 inches high, 60 inches high, 72 inches high, and 80 inches high. The height of these banner stands makes them a great and highly affordable option for adding vertical aspects to your trade show display.

Choosing the Right Size of Banner Stand
There are several factors to consider when choosing any type of banner stand. The same is true for choosing size. The following factors are important to consider in your selection:

- How often will you be using the banner stand? Do you need it to be extremely durable?
- How large is your display? Do you want the banner stand to be the main focus?
- What is your budget?

These are just a few questions to keep in mind before you determine what size banner stand will help make your company stand out from the rest.


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