PR Notes- Be Careful with Year-in-Review Stories

PR Professionals are often compelled and justified to engage in Year-in-Review stories this time of year.  I have found these articles to be of value when targeted toward key audiences versus the media and focused on solutions to clients’ business challenges and opportunities.  The other compelling factor for me is local community involvement.  A sample headline may read for a water/damage company, “2011 Year-in-Review- Helping (Fill in) Community Live Safer.  For this short Q&A to accompany an ad in the local newspaper, we focused on three pertinent examples, paying careful attention not to over-promote: 1) technology to detect/eliminate mold spores in a crawl space to help a local homeowner with severe respiratory problems breathe easier; 2) warning signs to help local bank employees detect health threats prior to entering foreclosed homes and businesses; 3) and a high profile community service project to build a safe facility and related services for abused kids and their families.  BTW- All of these are existing stories on our news website that have been summarized for the piece:)

In addition to the local paper, this story is a good fit for the news section of the website, monthly electronic newsletter and greeting cards.  Although the chances of earned media coverage are slim to none, I often advise small businesses to create their own news versus concentrating on media hits.  Seasons Greetings and Good Luck with Year-in-Review!