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CEO Thought Leadership Series from Trade Show

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Featured Video Blog Interviews

VLOG of the Month: Media Takes “Hands Off” Approach to FTC Native Advertising Compliance According to D S Simon Report


Spokeies™ University with Gini Dietrich

Gini Dietrich, lead blogger at Spin Sucks and CEO of Arment Dietrich, spoke with Founder of The SPOKEies™Doug Simon about authenticity in leadership communications. She also touched on the importance of using data to drive results and attain business goals. Watch below for more of Gini’s insights.

Key Quotes:

“When you create owned media, or content, it allows you to really become your most authentic self.”

“We have a gigantic opportunity out in front of us to use data. Data from our website, data from our customer relationship management software, data from all points of entrance into our site that gives us that validation.”

SPOKEies™ University with Lorraine Schuchart

Lorraine Schuchart, Founder and CEO of Prosper For Purpose and current board President of the PRSA Cleveland chapter, spoke with Founder of The SPOKEies™Doug Simon. Lorraine provided her useful tips on working with in-house spokespeople and touched on the role of authenticity in communications. Watch below to find out more.

Key Quotes:

“We typically train our clients to be their own spokespeople. I prefer to stay behind the scenes to give the clients the confidence and the tools that they need and then to let them loose.”

“I think that authenticity is first and foremost. To always tell the truth, to have messages, to stay on point, to role-play.” Lorraine on her tips and guidance for the most effective spokespeople. 

SPOKEies™ University with Kristy Wallace

Kristy Wallace, CEO of Ellevate Network spoke with Kristina Doytchinova, Marketing Manager of D S Simon Media about empowering women in the workplace and the importance of women establishing themselves as influencers in their fields. Kristy provides valuable tips and best practices on how women can boost their public profile and grow their professional influence.

Key Quotes: 

“Women as influencers add more voices to the conversation. We have thought leaders who are coming up with unique perspectives and opinions, solutions, innovation, around problems that involve all of us.”

“I think a good thought leader and a good spokesperson and influencer is listening to the conversation as well, and then able to respond to what they’re hearing out there.”

SPOKEies™ University with Tina McCorkindale

The SPOKEies™ Founder Doug Simon speaks with Tina McCorkindale, President and CEO of the Institute for Public Relations. The IPR is a non-profit organization that conducts research that matters to the public relations profession including digital media, marketing and analytics. Tina gives her thoughts on the critical role internal spokespeople play in an organization’s success and the importance of credibility.

Key Quotes:

“Your in-house spokesperson is probably one of the most important people to both your internal and external audiences because they are the ones who give your stakeholders trust in what you’re doing. They’re the ones who also help promote your message.”

“Credibility is absolutely critical. If you don’t have a credible spokesperson your organization’s reputation could be affected, your message may not be disseminated.”

SPOKEies™ University with Natan Edelsburg

Natan Edelsburg, Executive Vice President of Muck Rack, sat down with D S Simon Media CEO and Founder of The SPOKEies™, Doug Simon to talk about Muck Rack‘s new journalist survey and the 10th annual Shorty Awards. They also discussed the release D S Simon Media‘s upcoming Guide to Brand Authenticity: Journalist Survey 2017 and some of its’ surprising results.

Key Quotes: 

“When we ask journalists what the number one thing is that they reject a pitch for, besides the fact that it’s irrelevant, it is all about personalization.” – Natan Edelsburg

“Who do journalists want to talk to? In-house spokespeople? Or third-party expert? Overwhelmingly, more than 86% of them, preferred to actually interview the in-house spokesperson, compared with the third-party expert.” – Doug Simon

SPOKEies™ University with Lewis Goldberg

Lewis Goldberg, Managing Partner at KCSA Worldwide, sat down with D S Simon Media CEO and Founder of The SPOKEies™, Doug Simon, about the importance of compelling in-house spokespeople. He gives his tips and best practices for maximizing the effectiveness of an internal spokesperson.

Key Quotes:

“I think it’s clear that the level of authenticity, the level of knowledge about what they’re speaking about and the level of accessibility for an in-house spokesperson is significantly higher than either a paid gun or an outside expert. The media tends to like them more.”

“For our clients, they want to be seen as eminent in any field that they are in. Biotech, pharma, technology, financial services, advertising, whatever the industry is, they have a goal of being seen as a thought leader. Any acknowledgment of that leadership is of value and being acknowledged by an award like the SPOKEies™ for identifying them as being effective, transparent and accessible really proves value not only to the industry, but to the C-Suite that employs them.”

Happy 4th of July from D S Simon Media!

D S Simon Media wants to wish you a Happy Fourth of July! America and D S Simon Media share the same birthday. July 4th also marks the 31st Anniversary that D S Simon Media has been helping our clients turn their leaders into influencers and gain valuable media coverage for their campaigns.

Have a great holiday weekend!

Introducing The SPOKEies™

The PR Industry’s First Awards To Recognize Best Brand, Corporate & Non-Profit Spokespersons

With political spokespeople and CEO missteps dominating today’s 24/7 news cycle shouldn’t the best of the best in the corporate and non-profit worlds have an award that recognizes their skills in delivering their organization’s message? Today, The SPOKEies™ were born to do just that.

The SPOKEies™ are the first awards program to honor the best spokespeople representing brands, non-profits and corporations. There are more than 40 awards in six categories including 24 for corporate and brand spokespeople and 18 for non-profits. Categories include C-Suite Leader, Most Authentic, Most Engaging, and Crisis Management. Additionally, The SPOKEies will include specific awards in financial services, healthcare, sports, technology, entertainment and start-ups. Social media awards will be selected through a Twitter vote.

Spokespeople will be judged based on their trust and authenticity, plus their ability to engage the audience and cogently communicate their organization’s messages.The judges represent the best in the business. They include executives with the Better Business Bureaus, Twitter, Google, Barron’s, Edelman, Weber-Shandwick and others. A complete list of judges is here.

Judges feel The SPOKEies™ will make a difference:

  • “When you think about The SPOKEies™, you think to yourself, why hasn’t that existed historically.” — Alex Josephson, Head of Global Brand Strategy, Twitter
  • “It’s incredibly important for a CEO to be recognized as an effective communicator.” — Silvia Davi, CCO at Equities.com.
  • “One of the key elements of the SPOKEies is communicators and trust. Trust” – Scott Monty, CEO and Co-Managing Partner, Brain + Trust Partners
  • “There is great ROI if your leader is a great spokesperson,” — Fay Shapiro, Publisher of CommPro.biz, the industry trade site that is handling the technology for the award submissions.

SPOKEies™ University with Michael Smart

Michael Smart, Principal at Michael Smart PR spoke with D S Simon Media‘s Kristina Doytchinova about the importance of having authentic spokespeople that connect with the story you’re trying to pitch. Michael also gave some of his tips and best practices for corporate and non-profit spokespeople.

Key Quotes: 

“For spokespeople to be effectively authentic, they ought to believe in or at least subscribe to the point of the campaign.”

“Authenticity is so key for spokespeople because what’s the value of earned media? It’s that credibility. It’s the extra trust your audience affords us when they know that some gate keeper has decided to put this spokesperson in front of us.”

SPOKEies™ University with Shonali Burke

Shonali Burke, President and CEO of Shonali Burke Consulting spoke with Mike Bako of D S Simon Media about the importance of transparency when prepping your corporate spokesperson. She also provides some of her best practice tips and mistakes to avoid for brand and non-profit spokespeople.

Key Quotes:

“People forget that good spokespeople really represent the brand. So when you have a good spokesperson that is able to distill your story and communicate it to your audience and to your prospects in a way that it becomes their story, that’s really priceless.”

“What the public hears is going to be what the spokesperson says and it puts the spokesperson in a very awkward position if what they’re saying is incomplete or not the entire picture. That is something we have to try really really hard to avoid.”