Insider’s Guide to Earning National Press Coverage
Learn how to pitch to national outlets in 2018: Forget Cision, pitching to editors, timelines and everything you traditionally learned to do. Discover new ways to reach your audiences with different tools.
Insider’s Guide to Earning National Press Coverage
Join three PR pros representing health care, corporate and agency settings to talk about the PR industry trends they’re seeing. Glean information from the experts on how you can navigate the changing landscape in your own work place. Get ahead of the game and impress your boss with these tips from area professionals.
Andrea Clark, APR
Associate Director of Communications
Clare Wade, APR
Manager of Corporate Communications
We’ll welcome back the popular speed pitching format where PR pros will have four minutes with members of the local media to introduce themselves, share a bit about their organizations/clients and to pitch away! These four-minute meetings go fast - so be prepared, plan your story pitches and maximize your time.
La Mejor GR
Angie Morales, Director
Chuy Morales, Host
Howard Meyerson, Managing Editor
Eric Gaertner, News Leader
Lauren Fay Carlson, Managing Editor
West Michigan Woman
Amy Charles, Editorial Director
Phil Tower, Program Director
Marvis Herring, Reporter
Diana Willsie, Senior Producer
WXMI Fox 17
Brooks Blanton, News Director
Michael Martin, Dayside Assignment Editor
Brent Ashcroft, Reporter/Storyteller/Anchor
Julie Flynn, News Director
Registration is open for Chapter Members only through 9/10. General registration begins 9/11.
Media continues to evolve in the 21st century! Bloggers are the new media trend influencing upcoming generations that have started to rely more on the people they follow on social media rather than traditional media outlets. Learn more about working with influencers and bloggers at the upcoming WMPRSA event. This event will feature three Grand Rapids-based bloggers who have a range of interests and audiences.
As a Grand Rapids girl born and raised The GR Guide is a true passion project. Sara spent five years in Chicago after attending Calvin College working in advertising & fashion and started a lifestyle blog Project Soiree that featured interviews, restaurant reviews, recipes and the latest fashion trends. After returning to Grand Rapids she was thrilled to see the growth from local entrepreneurs who are making their mark on the City, and came up with the idea for The GR Guide to showcase these unique boutiques, fun events, delicious restaurants and more!
Ashley is a marketing consultant and lifestyle blogger behind Sincerely Ashley. In her free time you can find her spending time with her husband and sweet pup, snapping photos, cheering on her favorite sports teams, jamming to Hamilton, and soaking up everything this beautiful city has to offer. Connect with her on Instagram: @ashleywierenga.
Liz Della Croce
Liz is the creator and author of The Lemon Bowl®, a healthy food and travel blog. Since 2010, she has grown a loyal following of health-conscious readers from all over the world. Focusing on seasonal ingredients and whole foods, her collection of recipes is inspired by ethnic flavors from around the globe and the Lebanese dishes of her childhood. Liz has appeared live on the TODAY Show and tapes regular cooking segments on her local NBC affiliate station. Liz appeared on the cover of Woman’s World and has been featured in various publications including Real Simple Magazine, Shape Magazine, Food Network blog, Fitness Magazine, The Cooking Channel, TODAY Food and more. Through healthy eating and regular exercise, Liz achieved long term weight loss success and has a passion for helping others reach similar goals. In 2013, Liz Liz graduated from Boston University with a degree in Hospitality Administration and a minor in Marketing Management. She and her husband reside in Grand Rapids, MI along with their two young boys. Connect with Liz directly on Instagram, Facebook, Pinterest or via email: Liz@thelemonbowl.com
Please register by May 15.
Wander into the woods and get lost in the PR campaigns and tactics that charmed West Michigan in the past year. The 2018 PRoof Awards, presented by the Public Relations Society of America, West Michigan Chapter, shines a light on the best PR work of the year and highlights the highest standards of performance in the region.
Please RSVP by April 24.
We'll be joined by Mary Jo Herbig, APR, Director of Communications and Alexandria Dawson, Development and Program Associate from the Community Foundation of Greater Flint to hear how they responded to the Flint water crisis. They'll share what it was like building PR capacity during a crisis, managing the media mania, and helping guide donors to make the best possible impact.
Join NBC Nightly News associate producer Brooke Fraser for tips to successfully pitch a national news outlet, ideas on how your stories can be elevated to the national level, and more. Ample time will be reserved for Q&A so you can ask those burning national media questions.
Chapter Members $25
How Orlando Health Managed the Pulse Nightclub Shooting Crisis. Join us for this Skype presentation with the Orlando Health emergency management team for a look inside the events of the Pulse Nightclub shooting timeline, diving deep into crisis communication and media relations.
Learn 20 tips for creating content that gets read, viewed and remembered by your target audiences from a seasoned journalist and a veteran corporate communicator. Shandra Martinez, business reporter for MLive, and Beth Dornan, who leads content strategy for Amway North America, will share tips to help you create and place content that connects your organization with your target audiences.
From reaping low-hanging social media fruit (while avoiding "poison apples") to how to make your next event the community’s hottest “go to,” we’re bringing together award-winning, seasoned PR experts who understand the unique communication needs of nonprofit organizations.
As PR and communications pros, one of our main objectives is to keep executives and spokespeople on-message during media interviews. But when’s the last time you have put your team through a real-world media training session?
Please join us for an insightful conversation with USA TODAY Deputy World Editor, Jessica Durando. She'll be sharing with us about the changing landscape of national media and media relations — plus tips on working with national media.
With the rise of content marketing and social media, it's hard to know how exactly to pitch to the media these days. Lucky for us, we have a TV news veteran joining us to help sort things out. Steve Kelso spent years as an assignment desk editor at WOOD-TV8 and is now the communications and marketing manager at the Kent County Health Department. He'll be sharing with us a few actionable items to help the rest of us navigate this changing media landscape.
This month, we're having a brainstorming session where participants will work in small groups to develop solutions to actual social media challenges submitted by WMPRSA members. Please join us for this highly collaborative, hands-on session.
For 19 days, ArtPrize takes over three square miles of downtown Grand Rapids, transforming the city into an open playing field where anyone can find a voice in the conversation about what is art and why it matters. Drawing hundreds of thousands to the region from both near and far, the ArtPrize team takes a very strategic approach to communications, branding, public and media relations, and leveraging video and social media year-round. Join Todd Herring, director of creative and communications, to learn how ArtPrize (now in its ninth year) continues to evolve, how his team works to keep it fresh year over year, and how you can apply lessons from the world's largest public art event.
About Todd Herring
Todd Herring is the director of creative and communications for ArtPrize. He joined the ArtPrize team in 2011 after 10 years in marketing, public relations, product development and event production. At ArtPrize, he oversees the annual event design, visitor engagement strategies and all public relations and communications. He's earned two EMMY® nominations for his work as executive producer and host of the 2014 and 2015 ArtPrize Awards broadcasts. As a performer, Todd performs regularly with River City Improv, has been featured twice in LaughFest with his Johnny Cash-inspired show Cash Box, and has hosted the annual ArtPrize Awards since 2011.
Calling all PR and communications pros: It’s time to meet the media!
WMPRSA's Meet the Media event is just around the corner, and it’s always one of our best events of the season. We’ll welcome back the popular speed pitching format where PR pros will have three minutes with media to introduce themselves, share a bit about their organizations/clients and to pitch away!
These three-minute meetings go fast - so be prepared, plan your story pitches and maximize your time.
Arrive early to book the appointments you’re looking for. The appointment sign-up sheets will be available at 11 a.m. on a first come, first served basis.
Many members of the West Michigan media have been invited, and we are still working to confirm the final list of attendees. Updates will be posted to our website.
Confirmed Media Include:
Tanda Gmiter, News Leader
Shelley Irwin, Morning Show Host/Producer
Emily Linnert, Noon News Anchor/Reporter
Spencer Wheelock, 5 p.m. News Producer
Michael Martin, Dayside Assignment Editor
Erica Francis, Morning News Reporter
Val Lego, Health Reporter
Meredith TerHaar, Weekend Morning Host
Joanne Bailey Boorsma, Content Manager
Grand Rapids Business Journal
Tim Gortsema, Managing Editor
Grand Rapids Magazine
Sarah Tincher, Managing Editor
West Michigan Woman Magazine
Amy Charles, Editorial Director
Woman’s Lifestyle Magazine
Victoria Upton, Publisher
Learn from an industry leader how to breathe new life into your PR plans. PLUS: Members-only consultations.
Principal, Virginia V. Mann, Etc. and incoming Chicago PRSA President
Virginia Mann provides strategic counseling, management and implementation of the full-range of corporate communications and public relations functions to a variety of clients including: Allstate; Astellas Pharmaceuticals; Brunswick Corporation; Chicago Veterinary Emergency & Specialty Center/MedVet Chicago; Lou Malnati’s; Sears, Roebuck and Co.; Topco Associates LLC; and United Airlines.
Prior to launching Virginia V. Mann, Etc., Virginia served as Director, Corporate Communications for Topco Associates LLC, a $10 billion, privately-held company serving the food industry. Reporting directly to the CEO, Virginia directed all corporate communications and public relations efforts. Her prior experience includes being part of the internal communications team for Hewitt Associates; Manager, Public and Financial Relations for Brunswick Corporation; Department Director for the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons; and Senior Regional Manager for the National Association of Manufacturers (NAM), a federal lobbying organization. Virginia began her career as a Public Information Officer for Illinois Secretary of State Jim Edgar.
Virginia’s public relations success includes placements in the Wall Street Journal; The New York Times U. S. News & World Report; CBS Radio nationwide; Crain’s Chicago Business; Chicago Tribune; San Francisco Chronicle; MSNBC; and dozens of newspapers, trade publications, television stations, radio stations and websites around the globe.
A graduate of Barat College in Lake Forest, Illinois, Virginia has a BA with majors in Economics and Political Science. Virginia serves on the Board of Directors of the Chicago Chapter of the Public Relations Society of America, and currently holds the position of Treasurer. She is slated to assume the role of Vice President of the organization in 2017 and president in 2018.
Virginia has served as an Adjunct Professor of Public Relations at Loyola University, Chicago, School of Communication.
We’re back from summer break! At September’s luncheon, you’ll hear from local PR leaders from the business, non-profit and agency worlds. They’ll discuss the rapid changes that have taken place in PR and the new skills required to meet the demands of today's profession. PLUS: Members will have the opportunity to sit down one-on-one with our panel members to receive resume advice.
- Anna Bryce, APR – Manager of Global Corporate and Executive Communications, Amway
- Melissa Kamara Liggins – Director of Corporate Public Relations and Community Relations, Spectrum Health System
- Cynthia Domingo – Vice President and Principal, SeyferthPR
Got a business story to pitch? Looking to learn more about what West Michigan business publications are looking for? Join your WMPRSA PR and communications colleagues on Thursday, June 16 for our Business Beat Media Roundtable. Get the inside track on pitching business publications in West Michigan from our panel of business reporters and editors at top local outlets.
NEW THIS YEAR! WMPRSA members will have the opportunity to sign up for special 1:1 pitch sessions with panelists after the roundtable. Just one more reason to join WMPRSA!
This year’s panelists include:
- Tim Gortsema, Managing Editor, Grand Rapids Business Journal
- Shandra Martinez, Business Reporter, MLive/The Grand Rapids Press
- Phil Tower, Director of Programming, NEWSRADIO WOOD 1300 & 106.9FM I TALK 1230 WTKG
*Additional panelists may be added as the date nears
Companies big and small throughout West Michigan and beyond are challenged to attract and retain top talent to sustain and grow their businesses. In partnership with AMA West Michigan, learn from a panel of human resource, marketing and PR professionals how they use marketing and PR strategies to build their brands as employers of choice to recruit and retain employees.
Join us for this unique media panel discussion to learn more about these reporters, their outlets and how best to pitch your story. And PRSA members, save time before or after the program to sign up for one-on-one slots with our guest journalists.