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This is the first in a new series I will be writing for All About Jazz. The goal is to assist independent artists primarily in understanding how the media works and how best to work with the media to achieve the desired result: coverage! Please let me know if these columns prove to be helpful and if there is anything in particular you would like me to cover.
"PR" stands for "public relations."
The goal of PR is to relate information to the public that will benefit the client.
The client determines who its "public" is: examples include potential consumers, customers, investors or decisionmakers (Congress).
The client either creates a staff position within the company to handle PR activities or it hires a PR consultant or agency.
A PR consultant works with the client to determine: 1) what information is important to relay (based on client's objectives); 2) who the audience is; and 3) the best way to distribute the selected information to the selected audiences.
The information given to the public is selected to help promote and sell the client: either its product, services or position.
Information is relayed to the public through many different methods: events, shareholder meetings, advertising and direct mail are examples.
The medianewspapers, magazines, radio, tv, internetprovides distribution for the information PR consultants try to get to audiences.
However, the media-writers, producers, critics, reviewers, editors are also an audience for the information, since they receive the client's information first and then decide how and/or if to distribute it to their direct audience: readers, listeners or viewers.
Media who cover jazz are the most important audience to those of us who work with clients in jazz.