Near the end of a busy week and the beginning of a holiday weekend, we’re having conversations about our conversations. As we’ve noticed before, we talk about a lot of unusual topics—all in the name of client work, of course.
This week, we waxed prolific about motocross competitions, space cosmos, Gladiolus, being knighted by the Pope, being knighted by the Queen, nicknames for dads, pixels vs. points, chinchillas, copyright law, pizza printing, Sherlockian societies, starch in men’s shirts, varieties of silk, Tom Cruise graffiti art, slim fit vs. classic fit , feral cat rescue, Robert Downey Jr., the proximity of jails to high schools and colleges, a neon-painted water tower, chocolate cicadas, fried cicadas, Old Bay cicadas, sheet cakes, Baz Luhrmann, the average number of steps for an office worker, craft beers, “selfies” at graduation, simple syrup, sunglasses, soccer, allergies to grapefruit, the differences between dollar store chains, and Brown Liquor Bars (hmmm… lots of talk this week about alcohol).
All in all, good discussion yielding great work.
May 24, 2013
As is always the case on Monday mornings, we have been sharing stories about our weekend adventures: Preakness festivities, weddings, art shows, sports tournaments, museum visits, a baptism. While recounting our personal stories of revelry, competition, culture and celebration of milestones, we are (as is always the case) reminded of our work.
Our recollection of our weekend experiences was prompted by the “takeaways” that extended the experiences beyond the race, the ceremony, or the exhibit. Our Black Eyed Susan cocktails at the Preakness were served in commemorative glasses so that at home, each cocktail, or glass of juice, or swig of milk, could be a reminder of May 18, 2013. Guests at the wedding were presented with boxes of the bride and grooms favorite candy so that for days after, the memory of the wedding would be (literally and figuratively) savored. At the museum, children participating in an interactive scavenger hunt recorded their results on personalized tally sheets, perfect for posting in a bedroom bulletin board or sharing during classroom “show and tell” – another extension (and promotion) of the experience.
Today, some of us will be planning how we will “extend the experience” for a client’s customers at the six summer events we are coordinating for them around the country. The sunglasses, glow sticks and t-shirts do more than put our client’s logo in the hands (and on the bodies) of their customers: they remind their audience of the good time and positive feeling they had, create that all-important positive association, and extend the relationship beyond the moment of the event.
May 20, 2013
A few less walls. A lot more blinking lights. Plenty of places to chat.
It’s a new week, and we’re excited to start using the new renovations to our office space. A couple of walls are gone, making it easier for us to share (and shout) between spaces and levels. Our new server (installed so we could work quicker and more efficiently) has added a spaceship-esque-ness to our equipment room—lots of flashing lights and colorful wires! We’ve rearranged a bit and brought in some new furniture so there are now four dedicated and comfortable areas for collaboration and collective creativity.
The renovations are more than “easy” and “comfortable.” They reflect the changes in how we work and how we help our clients. There are more partnerships and less boundaries between PR (and our) functions. Everything happens quicker. With our office renovations, our form now follows our function.
May 13, 2013
From Caitlin McKelvey, a graduating senior who interned with Himmelrich PR this past semester.
As a University of Maryland student, my classroom course content focused on producing various writing products used in public relations. As a Himmelrich PR intern, the understanding of the PR process and how the writing product is used in a marketing strategy became apparent—and came with lessons learned.
My internship was more than intern busy work, and gave me the opportunity to work with a team of PR pros—brainstorming, devising messages, themes and taglines, and finding advertising opportunities—to problem solve so we could meet client goals. I also provided input on proposed project plans and developed pitches for online publications and bloggers. Every day offered new learning experiences and new chances to explore a variety of public relations tactics.
I’m closing this chapter of my education with a new understanding of the process of public relations, especially these key lessons:
- It takes a village—no individual can create public relations success. It takes a team to communicate effectively, and rely on each other for support to create greater opportunity for success.
- Outcome comes from input—the work and experience is equal to the dedication— asking lots of questions, conducting extensive research and putting in the hard work will yield successful results and positive rewards.
- Show, not tell—no one wants to be simply told information. The challenge is in finding ways to make even the most simple concepts or news an opportunity to share, check-in or update.
- There are no mistakes, only learning opportunities—things usually don’t go as planned. Constructive criticism, learning from mistakes, and moving forward means that the next project will be even better.
As my final semester ends, and I prepare for graduation, I move on with direction, goals and a new found confidence in my future in PR—confidence that could only come from my recent real world experience.
May 10, 2013
Big plans this summer
With corporate sponsorships
We love fireworks.
May 6, 2013
From Blair Johnson, a Himmelrich PR intern who will be graduating in May from Towson University:
When asked in my interview for my internship at Himmelrich PR, “How do you define public relations?” I scrambled to come up with an answer. I can tell you examples of good PR and bad PR and I’ve created a fake PR campaign for class, but when asked to define the top subject that has been the sole focus of my higher education, I drew a blank. It might have been interview jitters, but maybe I struggled because I didn’t completely understand PR. Being an intern has helped me grasp not only the concept of PR, but has taught me valuable, practical lessons that I will be able to use in the future.
Being an intern at Himmelrich PR exceeded any expectations I had. Not only did I get to do meaningful work instead of just mundane tasks, but I was actually asked for my input. I saw a successful, fast-paced work environment first-hand and grasped a better understanding of what effective public relations consists of. The most valuable lessons I will take away from my internship are:
- Get to the point. Press materials, media pitches or emails shouldn’t be too lengthy. You want to get your point across in a concise, captivating manner.
- Don’t pass up any opportunity. Attend client meetings when given the chance. Join group brainstorming efforts. Participate in as many conversations as possible. Find a way to put yourself out there and contribute.
- Speak in different voices. Having an understanding of the client’s point of view, voice and vision is essential in writing effective social media content, press releases and other communications that represent them.
- It isn’t by the book. While you may learn a lot in classes, it’s the real world experiences that will teach you the most. Don’t be afraid to take chances, lose the fear of being wrong or taking missteps—you’ll get much more out of your internship that way.
In addition to these lessons, I now know that public relations is not just one thing, or singularly defined. I was able to see it’s an ever-evolving approach to meeting the varying aspects of client’s goals—whether it’s planning events, generating attendance, coordinating sponsorships or facilitating a rebranding project. I will always be grateful for the skills I have developed this past semester, and for the better understanding I have of a field I now know I want to pursue a career in.
May 2, 2013
Tens of thousands of visitors and hundreds of artists packed the Maryland State Fairgrounds this past weekend for the final Sugarloaf Crafts Festival of the spring season. It was all good: record setting crowds and $1.2 million in artist sales meant it was a great weekend for our client!
The new high for attendance was certainly helped by a new high for media coverage—including 13 segments on all four Baltimore TV stations (check out the stories on WBAL and WMAR), a cover story in the Live! section of the Baltimore Sun and a cover story in the Carroll County Times. Hundreds of online mentions, including the Baltimore Sun’s “50 top spring events in Baltimore,” and CBS Baltimore’s “Best Upcoming Spring Art Festivals or Events in Baltimore,” also contributed to the big boost in attendance.
We’ve set the bar high… we’ve ended on a high note… we’re—well, you get it. We are looking forward to topping our promotional efforts in the fall with the next six Sugarloaf Craft Festivals.
April 30, 2013
For many years, we have recognized National Volunteer Week (this week) by promoting the work of Business Volunteer Unlimited Maryland. BVU creates opportunities for business professionals to engage in meaningful volunteer service throughout Baltimore. The nonprofit’s annual Volunteer Week celebration is always a great event for connecting earnest professionals with the deserving organizations that need their help. But this year, BVU’s celebration will be in June to coincide with its 10th anniversary festivities, so we were left this week to think about… ourselves.
Since Himmelrich PR was founded in 1997, we have been committed to volunteerism and community service. As president Steve Himmelrich said in March in a magazine interview about the firm’s volunteer activities, “We want to share our good fortune with those who might be able to benefit from our interests, talents and eagerness to help.”
This week, we have reflected on our volunteer contributions. Our firm has provided pro bono public relations and strategic planning services to dozens of local nonprofits, including many working in education, the arts, homelessness, and mental illness. Our people have sat on and taken leadership roles with boards, committees and commissions. We have shoveled, painted, glued and hauled in an effort to create cleaner and brighter neighborhoods.
In the past year, and as a team, we planted trees and harvested crops at a nonprofit farm. We collected hundreds of gifts and wrapped presents for the Salvation Army’s Angel Tree program. Individuals in our office picked up trash from streams leading into the Chesapeake Bay, beautified neighborhood parks, assisted military veterans and families during deployment, coordinated programs for trade associations, served meals to homeless men and women at four different facilities, and rebuilt homes destroyed by natural disasters.
We’re proud of what we do—not only for our clients, but also for our neighbors and our community.
April 25, 2013
Eager undergrads interested in using their PR prowess in their pursuit to becoming a PR professional: look no further! Spend your summer with us doing real work, for real clients, in a really cool work environment, and with really nice people. Internships at Himmelrich PR provide the opportunity for college students to apply their studies and continue increasing their knowledge in public relations.
Interns support our client teams directly by working on diverse projects, including:
- writing press materials, newsletters and other publications
- creating content for social media
- planning events
- researching media and promotional opportunities
- developing media lists
If you’re ready for a summer of opportunity, please email a cover letter and resume to email@example.com.
Priority will be given to candidates with academic course work or prior experience in public relations, marketing or communications. Internships are unpaid and can be used for academic credit.
No phone calls, please.
April 17, 2013
The Sugarloaf Crafts Festival got off to a stormy start this past weekend in Gaithersburg, MD (with lots of rain Friday morning), but soon enough the sun came out—and so did the crowds and the media! Tens of thousands of craft lovers ventured to the Montgomery County Fairgrounds to see their favorite Sugarloaf artists and shop artists’ newest work.
Artists weren’t the only ones displaying their craft at the Festival. We crafted a media strategy that targeted TV (Fox 5 and WUSA 9 covered the event) and yielded important stories in local publications like the Montgomery Village and Gazette that attracted visitors.
Our last show of the spring Sugarloaf season is next weekend in Timonium, MD. While we’ll be hoping for sunny weather, we wouldn’t mind another shower of media coverage.
April 15, 2013