Friday, 3 December 2010

When NOT To Hold Your Event

This blog was inspired by all the media who have grumbled to me this week about the number of events on in late November/ December. Honestly, it really pisses them off - and they are also genuinely disappointed that they have to miss out on covering some fabulous events. Additionally, lots of PRs are upset that they're not getting much coverage - often absolutely none at all. It's the same every single year, but nothing ever changes.

Friday, 26 November 2010

PRs & Booze: A Love Story.

This blog topic was inspired by my dear friend Mike Goldman and his mate Benn Jae, who have this week launched a charity initiative to NOT drink over the silly season, called Desperate2Drink. They figured anyone who does Ocsober or Dry July is a lightweight and that this is truly the ultimate test! Bizarrely enough, prior to them telling me about it I had already made the personal decision to not drink from December 18th-Jan 2nd, to give myself a break and start 2011 with bright eyes & a bushy tail. That's right, no alcohol at all through Xmas & New Year's. OK you can get up off the floor now. It's true.

Tuesday, 16 November 2010

How To Lose A Job In PR

Everyone talks about how tricky it can be to get a job in PR and the various ways to get your foot in the door, but perhaps we should have just as much discussion on how to keep the job once you actually get it. So you've gone to Uni, studied PR, done some work experience, completed an internship, and scored a job - what do you do to ensure you don't lose it? As I've blogged before, there is NO crime in making a mistake - we are all human, and it's how you handle that mistake that proves your worth. Being shown the door is usually not due to mistakes, but rather deep-rooted character traits. I chatted with a group of Sydney's top PRs to find out exactly what the fireable offences were...

Thursday, 11 November 2010

Party Pearls of Wisdom

After 14 years in this crazy industry, it occurred to me the other day that I've probably collected some random bits & pieces of advice that may be helpful to you folk out there. I assume if you're reading my blog it means you're either a) working in PR b) interested in the world of PR or c) just bored out of your holyshitballs at work. So, I've conjured up some party pearls of wisdom that could assist. There's a couple of cubic zirconias of wisdom in here too, but every little gem counts...

Thursday, 7 October 2010

Confessions of a Model

Oh to be so beautiful that people pay money for the privilege of taking a photograph of you. Surely it can't be that taxing a job? I actually think it is, as I've had the dubious honour of a couple of modelling jobs in my time. Victoria's Secret you ask? The Pirelli Calendar, surely! No - I was an 'extra' in a fashion ad in London for a friend and a promotional model (complete with cheesy sash) for another friend at a Darling Harbour Convention Centre Exhibition stand. Oh, the dizzying modelling heights that I have reached. All I can say is that these two jobs were so deathly boring and involved hours of standing around - being completely still for the first gig and completely Miss-Universe-smiley for the second. Maybe I have A.D.D because I wanted to shoot myself during both, so I actually feel for people who do this day in and day out for a living. It just aint for me. Cue Kasey Chambers: "Am I not pretty enough..." Thank God.

Thursday, 23 September 2010

Confessions of a Celebrity Manager

OK so Celebrity Managers are a bit of a misunderstood bunch and there have been more than a few clashes between PRs/Media/Celebrities and Celebrity Managers over the years. But they are a very hard working bunch - and lets face it, they deal with a breed of person that can be um...tricky to say the least...on a daily basis. Considering the grizzly celebrity experiences many PRs have had, if you actually think about it we should perhaps all hug a Celebrity Manager today. So what really pisses them off?

Friday, 6 August 2010

Confessions of a Restaurant Manager

After I wrote last week's blog the stories kept coming, so much so that I felt restaurant folk deserved the spotlight for a moment. The humble manager and wait staff go through alot in the course of a single night, and are always good for a hilarious story or two. If you've ever wondered whether the restaurant really is booked out, or what causes the ire of our restaurant friends, read on.

Tuesday, 27 July 2010

Confessions Of A Doorbitch

So I blog about parties and what happens at them, but what about what happens right outside the door? The things I've witnessed and the stories I've heard over the years from doorstaff are often funnier than the gossip bubbling inside. My all time fave would have to be the loud lass who swore black and blue that she knew Tiffany "really, really well". I must admit I let her babble on a fair bit before I eventually let her know that I was in fact, Tiffany...

Thursday, 22 July 2010

The Art of The Canape

I often joke that the reason I got into an event career was due to my long-running obession with canapes. Sometimes I don't think it's a joke at all...I suffer from a fear of commitment in various areas of my life so the humble canape represents the reverse: fast, fabulous and fulfilling! No commitment necessary. I would much prefer to graze on bite sized morsels of heaven than commit to a single main meal, and am sure that the rise of tapas bars confirms that many feel the same. Here are some catering tips & tricks and opinions I have formed over the years, from the PR perspective:

Thursday, 15 July 2010

Just Don't Call It Networking

I was asked to MC at a great PRIA event this week, called "The Perfect Pitch" - and was asked to say a few words about networking. I pondered the subject and promptly realised the only problem I have with networking is the word itself. It sounds so...contrived. It suggests that when you 'network', that you're doing it for the express purpose of getting something out of it. I don't think I've ever talked to a stranger, at a work function or other, just to elevate my career. I simply genuinely enjoy talking to people - even the arseholes (more on that further down).

Thursday, 8 July 2010

The Art of The Invitation

This blog topic came courtesy of Sarah Wilson who I shared several cups of rosebud & lemongrass tea with this week. (I'm a huge fan of Sarah's column in Sunday Life and reading her weekly hints on how to make life sweeter always does make my life sweeter, without fail.) So you think an invitation is just a piece of paper delivered to you in an envelope? Think again - like everything in PR world it can be ridiculously labour intensive, often fraught with glitches and can send us not just to the Post Office but screaming for the hills. Here's some tips I've learnt over the years, and why I would never send an invite to a celebrity via their agent.

Thursday, 1 July 2010

Choose Your Own Celebrity

There's been alot of talk lately about the value of paying a celebrity to spruik your product. Sometimes it's hugely successful, sometimes it's an abysmal failure and sometimes it's just, well...weird. Like Lleyton Hewitt as the face of Sorbent toilet paper. Enough said. Some brands are just tempted to throw alot of coin at *insert person of the moment here*...but is it always worth it, and what do you do when you have a great brand but not alot of dosh?

Friday, 25 June 2010

Shut The Fick Up!

This blog was inspired by the speeches at the divine Sydney Winter Festival last night and the shockingly rude guests in attendance. The word fick is a nod to the fact I was standing in a German Bier Hall at the time, am sure you don't need Google Translate to work out what it means. This is a major grumble of mine at events, and one that needs to be addressed because, seriously? You've been cordially invited to a fabulous soiree, you're drinking for free, you're eating for free, surely the least you can do is shut the fick up while the formalities take place? And yes I'm one of those people that yell SHUT UP! if you don't, even when it's not my event. I generally leave the fick part out.

Thursday, 17 June 2010

You Know You Work in PR When...

PR is not just a job, it tends to completely permeate the very fabric of your life. A budding young PR girl Kaaran inspired this week's blog when we started discussing what you should do when you forget someone's name at a party. PRs always know, so it got me thinking of all the quirks that make PRs some of my very favourite people to be around. They are usually the kids who had the best dress-ups, nailed show & tell, and told the best stories in the playground...then worked out how to get paid for it.

So you know you work in PR when...

Thursday, 10 June 2010

Are Parties Important?

OK this topic puts a smile on my face. When anyone who works in events is asked what they do for a living, the reactions are usually amusing, ranging from "Wow that's unreal!" to "...that's actually a job?" and everything in between. From a personal perspective, I've always absolutely loved the career choice. As the old adage goes, "find a job you love and you'll never work a day in your life" and I couldn't agree more. However, when I was 27 I actually had a crisis of conscience wondering whether what I did held any value at all, probably brought about by spending time with a couple of friends who have real, 'grown up' jobs. One is a criminal lawyer with the DPP and the other is a kidney transplant surgeon - a far cry from the lipstick wonderland I had always frolicked in. And as Carrie would say, I couldn't help but wonder...

Wednesday, 2 June 2010

The Costume Party is BACK!

This blog was inspired by the ad for www.costumebox.com.au currently on TV. To me it indicates a tipping point of sorts - have you ever seen costumes advertised on TV? The costume party is officially BACK. However, to anyone like me, they never went away. But like all trends, it comes and goes and I have been predicting for years that they are growing infinitely in popularity - you would only have need attended a Social Diary party in the last 4 years to see me making a pretty loud point. But how to throw a party that truly terrifies a certain percentage of the population?
Here are some tips.

Thursday, 20 May 2010

PRs & Media Wrap Up

OK so I had to really think about this one hence the 3 week absence! I won't blog unless I have something to say and I went round in circles a bit on this one. I started off by getting quotes from media but decided that I should just write it from the point of view of the PR, considering this is what I know. It's brief, but there's a few bits 'n bobs I've learnt over the years that could assist here. 

I think PRs should:

Friday, 30 April 2010

PRs vs Media

I have to say I really did enjoy the emails I received after last week's "Media vs PRs" blog. Wow, do you guys have some grumbles! Funnily enough there weren't that many different kinds, they were just the same grumbles over and over again. It makes me laugh because I'm technically not a publicist anymore (except for my one special client Curtis) but I certainly remember the *ahem* occasional frustrations I experienced with the media (who I do truly adore). So, I added my own two cents below in the form of a single quote. But which one is mine? All quotes have been sourced from a gaggle of my favourite buzzy PRs - next week I'll do a wrap up on this silent war and then we'll all hold hands and sing Kumbaya, campfire love-in style.

The things PRs hate the most are...

Thursday, 22 April 2010

Media vs PRs

OK, so we're all supposed to work together but often PRs couldn't be further on the other side of the fence to media. While I'm not naive enough to believe that the silent war that wages on between the two camps will ever be over, I do believe that the more we discuss the grumbles each has for the other, the closer we'll all get to an elusive detente. While without question there's a whole lotta of love between the two groups, this week I'm discussing the things that PRs do that consistently piss off the media. And of course the PRs will have their turn next week! I'll then *ahem* attempt some kind of summary where we'll all hopefully learn something, and be just that little bit savvier in our dealings with each other.

Wednesday, 14 April 2010

The Most Memorable Parties I've Attended

Now here's a question I get asked alot. It was a funny one to ponder as there's been so many - but I settled on listing the ones that either inspired me in the early days or throughout my career, or were memorable simply because I couldn't actually believe I was lucky enough to be there. None of these were events I produced myself - but they are certainly ones that have burnt themselves into my memory for a number of reasons. I figured chronological order was best:

Monday, 5 April 2010

How To Get On The Guest List

If I had a canape for every time I've been asked "How can I get on the guest list?" I would be a very robust gal. And if I may be a little cheeky here, the answer funnily enough is simple: make friends with a PR. It's really not much more complicated than that! When we were kids it was about having a friend with a beach house, when we were teens we all wanted a friend with a car - and now that I'm in my 30's it's about having a friend with a private jet, luxury yacht and their very own island.
I'm still looking.

Tuesday, 30 March 2010

To Gift or Not To Gift?

There's nothing quite like stumbling out of a party with a bag of mystery goodies to rifle through, particularly when it's eons until your birthday. It's a fabulous way for brands to sample their wares, and without question I've become a loyal fan of many products after first encountering them in gift bags. It also leaves the recipient with a warm fuzzy glow and happy associations with the event and the brand gifting them.

The inspiration for this blog subject came from someone at lunch last week who mentioned that a girlfriend is obsessed with gift bags. OK...you say, aren't we all?, but this woman is married to a man worth $11 billion. Yes, that's with a b, not a meagre m. This is a woman who could probably buy every company represented within most gift bags, but she simply loves them.

Tuesday, 23 March 2010

Celebrity Meltdowns

When someone looks in on the PR world from the outside, it's usual for them to want to know more about the celebrities we often work with. Oh, the glamour of it all! they think. While the majority of my experiences with celebrities have been great, for every time a little gold dust sprinkles onto your shoulder when you rub it against theirs, there's also some shockers...

Thursday, 18 March 2010

PR F@#k Ups


A f@#k up is a f@#k up in any industry - this is not a dig at PRs...I am one after all, and one doesn't like to scheiben in one's own nest. But - where there's a f@#k up, there's a lesson to be learnt. Some of the standard FU's in PR world are typos in media releases, forgetting to BCC everyone, forgetting to invite someone important, drinking too much at your own event. Yawn. Let's get onto the juicy stuff:

Thursday, 4 March 2010

Everything You Need to Know About Gatecrashers

Ah...gatecrashers. We've all had them, sometimes we haven't known what to do about them (without causing a scene), and yet they remain either a source of amusement or a frustrating fact of life for all event producers. Firstly, you have to discern which type of gatecrasher you're dealing with:

How to Hire Work Experience Students

I have always been a huge advocate of work experience within our industry. It's a tough one to crack, so sometimes it's the only way in. Work experience students can be enormously helpful whether you're starting out, established, or just crazy busy and needing an extra pair of hands, stat.