Archive for the ‘Blogging’ Category

Brookline helps Cabela’s launch first mainland BC location in Abbotsford

Monday, July 11th, 2016

Doug Self, Account Executive

 

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Working with national and international brands, Brookline is no stranger to our clients having avid fans, but none more so than the fanatical Cabela’s supporters. Last fall, we had the pleasure of opening the first Cabela’s in Calgary, which included several thousand people lining up to browse the store on the day of grand opening, giveaways, a ribbon-arrowing and more smiling, diehard fans than we could imagine. When we were recently tasked with preparing the Cabela’s team and managing media relations for the grand opening of the Abbotsford location – we knew exactly what to expect.

Two weeks prior to the public grand opening, Brookline was on-the-ground in Abbotsford to provide media training, both education and on-camera practice, and run an invite-only media preview. Many of Lower Mainland’s most well-known bloggers and influencers from several specialities were in attendance, including those focused on parenting, lifestyle, events and outdoors sports. They were joined by local print, online and TV outlets to preview the 70,000 square foot outdoors mecca.

A quick two weeks later, Brookline was onsite for the grand opening festivities, which saw thousands of people through the doors on opening day, some lining up several days in advance to be at the front of the line. There were product giveaways, gift cards for those who showed up early to wait in line, samples of the house-made fudge and nuts, a DJ, Cabela’s Ambassadors (well-known outdoors personalities) and the traditional Cabela’s ribbon-cutting in which the ribbon is cut with an arrow fired from a tree stand in the parking lot. Did we mention it was raining? In typical-BC fashion, the rain didn’t keep anyone away, especially the outdoors-enthusiasts loyal to Cabela’s. Local media was onsite for the grand opening, which resulted in print and online video coverage of the event. As always, it was a sight to behold!

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The first guests are welcomed to Cabela’s Abbotsford.

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Don’t forget to look up at Cabela’s Abbotsford – there’s a Sasquatch in the trees!

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-Doug Self is an Account Executive in Brookline with a background rooted in the technology industry. His expertise lies in media relations, content creation, and communication and marketing strategy.

How to Blog Without an Idea

Thursday, June 23rd, 2016

Lisa Libin, Group Director

Blogging is hard. Personally, it’s not the writing that’s hard – it’s the ideas. I once started a personal blog that lasted about a month, as the concept of finding fresh content on a daily or weekly basis became just too difficult. Sadly, my blog died with so many others who have faced a similar fate. I’m pretty sure there is a blog graveyard somewhere for all of us with great intentions but the inability to follow-through.

So why is coming up with something to write about so difficult? We can easily engage in conversations with family, friends and even strangers, yet the notion of putting a conversation down on paper is extremely trying. Ironically, I’ve been mulling this question over while attempting to think of an idea for this blog and decided to focus this article on tips for content creation for blogs.

  1. Leverage “newsjacking” – one of the easiest ways to come up with ideas is to speak to a current news story and provide a perspective. This is especially relevant for those of us in PR who can speak to their own take on a crisis or current headline. That said, the challenge with this is that it needs to be timely – news changes daily and unless you are prepared to comment during that particular news cycle, your blog will likely be too late and irrelevant if you wait.
  2. Sharing is Caring – don’t be afraid to use someone else’s blog or thought leadership piece as an anchor to your own blog. They might have a perspective you can add to, or if you disagree with their blog, don’t be scared to provide a different point of view as well. Just make sure to reference and credit the original blogger – who knows, you may even make a new friend out of it!
  3. Take advantage of your inner circle – think about a recent conversation you may have had with a friend or family member. Perhaps this could make for a good topic as well. Did you have an argument with someone that you can now put out there to the online world? Or did someone come to you with a problem you needed to mull over and can now pose this same question to your readers? Of course, make sure you aren’t disclosing someone’s personal information or embarrassing anyone online, but if you really take the time to listen to your daily conversations, you can likely come up with some good tidbits for your blog.
  4. Create a bit of controversy– depending on the audience you are writing for and the platform you are using (i.e. work vs. personal), a great option is to think about something no one else is willing to talk about. For us PR pros, it could be as simple as “with the rise of citizen journalism and online channels, are PR professionals even relevant anymore?” Obviously we are (which I note is my own biased opinion), but some may disagree. A bit of debate can actually make for an engaging blog.
  5. Think about the future – what do you believe will happen in the future that other people may consider unlikely? This is a great way to show your industry knowledge by not only speaking to the present but also positioning yourself as a thought-leader by making bold, but ideally astute, predictions about the future. It’s not about flying cars or living on the moon, it’s about how do you think your job or your industry will change in the next 10, 20, 30 years and putting some of these thoughts on paper.

Hopefully many of you have found information helpful for keeping blog content fresh and thought-provoking. Ultimately, you want people to read and engage in your blog – otherwise you are really just writing to yourself. Now, hopefully for my next blog, I will take my own advice!
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-Lisa Libin is Group Director at Brookline Public Relations. She is a seasoned communications practitioner who specializes in delivering smart, creative and results-driven programs for her clients. She has planned and executed winning campaigns for some of the world’s top consumer and corporate brands. Lisa’s strengths lie in issues management and brand reputation issues, working with local and global communications teams to handle ongoing and current industry issues.