Uncovering opportunities: can media relations really make a difference?

Untapped possibilities can hide anywhere.

One of the most exciting aspects of working in the PR or media relations field must be the ability to uncover the potential all around us. We make the most of media pitches, experiences, events and news for our clients.

A great cup of coffee can be fuel, inspiration, or a gift from a friend when there's work to be done.

With the right connections, creative minds and the energy (and often caffeine) to execute good work on behalf of a business, it's truly fulfilling to see how you can make a difference. I have been known to get caught up in a whirlwind of spur-of-the-moment must-do PR possibilities even when I just encounter friends on the street - like my friendly neighborhood barista Andy on his way to a national coffee competition, or a longtime artist, friend and business owner Carey. I see so much potential just walking by in stories like these.

Writing as a journalist, a social media professional or PR pro generally requires lists, notes and more notes abound.

I knew when I was working as a full-time reporter that I would never survive in sales or in any other job that required me to be anything less than honest about the subject at hand. If I was going to convince anyone else of the potential of a story, I had to believe it myself. Cue your eye rolls now.

I knew if I were to foray into the world of public relations or marketing, which I later did, I would have to find a way to work on projects I felt that connection to as well. I have never been one to fake my way through life. You see, I was born without a poker face.

When confused or upset, I have absolutely no poker face - here is the scary proof.

The topics I have pursued, written about or promoted over the years have not consistently been considered high-brow or life-altering work. While writing rock reviews under my psuedonym Ava Dial, detailing a charity fashion show experience in my newspaper column, or more recently, managing craft beer PR launches, these can pose challenges. None of it is rocket science. 

I have loved every minute of the opportunities I have earned and the range of work I've done so far. It shares a common thread.

When work looks like this, opportunities for creativity abound. 

No, not beer. Not always beer.

To successfully translate anything into a cohesive piece of journalism, to create a wildly successful event or pitch media on a clients' behalf and secure phenomenal results, the root of that work must comes from something I believe in, wholeheartedly. For me, that something has often come directly from passionate people who developed a significant products or achieved a status that far surpassed has what most others around us have accomplished.

Uncovering those stories make this kind of behind-the-scenes work I have chosen to do completely worthwhile. PR pros aim to find or help others discover such stories within themselves. Then we shine a bright light to show the public how those stories relate to our own lives, too.

When done right, for the right audience, we have a chance to reaffirm connections to one another. In this way PR, journalism, marketing and social media becomes something more than written or spoken words, more than sharing information or perhaps trying to persuade an audience to reach a goal, sell a product, or fill a theater.

The intentions behind this kind of work can be used for good, too.

When was the last time you felt positively inspired or excited by an idea or opportunity in your business?