Crime Remains King While Positive PR Plays the Pawn in Detroit’s Comeback Swing

Strategically Speaking: A Blog by Denha Media Group

It’s the Monday after the Grand Prix and just a couple of days following the Mackinac Policy Conference, and my morning scan of the media was a breaking news story thatchess-316658_960_720 is a strong reminder that Detroit cannot escape it’s number one problem ­– crime.

Crime will always over shadow any positive PR. It’s the old adage that if bleeds it leads and boy have we been bleeding.

The first Twitter feed I read that morning was from Tom Jordan and WWJ: “Police investigate Triple Murder on City’s West Side.”

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Memorable Mackinac Policy Conference Moments

Strategically Speaking: A Blog by Denha Media Group

Some of the most memorable Mackinac moments are crafted quotes and comments that were actually strategically created to be memorable sound bites in speeches and media interviews.

It’s all about knowing how to tell your own story.

Nearly one year later, you may not remember exactly who said what during the 2015 Mackinac Policy Conference and at the Detroit Policy Conference but at the time, the messages were noted.

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Prince: The Man, The Music and The Media

Strategically Speaking: A Blog by Denha Media Group

Everyone seems to have a favorite Prince song, a memorable concert or if you’re lucky, a piece of signed memorabilia.

My sister Sandra had an actual Prince moment. It was the 80s, around the time Purple Rain hit the airwaves and movie theaters.  Sandra was 20-something on vacation with some girlfriends. They headed to Hollywood and ended up at a hair salon on Rodeo Drive. While inside, they spotted Prince.

In her excitement, Sandra snapped a photo but not without his bodyguard noticing. He actually followed her out of the salon with who would become a multi-platinum-selling music legend who transcended genres and generations and demanded the camera. She, at first, resisted and then relinquished the camera. “Wait here,” said the body guard.

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The Incredibly Shrinking Newsroom

Strategically Speaking: A Blog by Denha Media Group

It is a decade-old saga that continues here in Metro Detroit — the incredibly shrinking newsroom. Three Detroit television reporters are just the latest causalities in the downsizing trend we have seen in news over the last decade. Soon to be off the air are Murray Feldman, Jason Carr and Lee Thomas; they are all leaving FOX 2 News, and it doesn’t appear to be a personal decision.

Contracts are up and they won’t be renewed, according to reports.

Feldman is FOX 2’s “money man.” He’s been reporting and anchoring at the station for 40 years. That’s longer than anyone currently on Detroit TV. Feldman anchors the 5:30pm news with Sherry Margolis. He also has his popular “Job Shop” and “Money Minute” segments.

The popular morning show “The Nine” will experience an overhaul once Carr and Thomas both feature and entertainment reporters —  vacate those anchor chairs.

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Do You Have Netiquette?

Strategically Speaking: A Blog by Denha Media Group

Email etiquette is vital in maintaining respect, decorum and relationships

A few years ago, I got into a very heated argument via email. After days of arguing with this particular person and more than two dozen emails later, I realized the dispute had escalated far beyond the original disagreement and all because we were communicating via email.

Everyone knows the 24 hour rule. If someone or something has really upset you, wait at least 24 hours to respond. Waiting to respond to an email that infuriates you is also good advice. You may not have to wait 24 hours but don’t be too quick to hit the send button, either.

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Strategically Networking At The Mackinac Policy Conference

Strategically Speaking: A Blog by Denha Media Group

When I went to the Mackinac Policy Conference for the first time as a reporter for WJR in the 1990s, I learned an invaluable networking lesson that has stayed with me ever since.

Know how to network and develop relationships.

It was my second time at the Policy Conference hosted by the Detroit Regional Chamber. The first time I went, I was as an editor of a Health Care Business Magazine.

The first night on the island — before the cocktail hour started on the porch of the Grand Hotel — my News Director – Dick Haefner – told me that the event was the best networking event I would ever attend calling it “the networking event of the year.”

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Resolving To Communicate Ethically

Strategically Speaking: A Blog by Denha Media Group

Why not resolve to communicate with ethics, integrity and honesty and surround yourself with people who do the same?

Many professions, including the two I have spent my career in — Journalism and Public Relations — have codes of ethics. There is value in reminding yourself of these codes on a yearly or somewhat regular basis. If you have never read the code of ethics in your profession, it may be a good time to do so.

In life, how we communicate is a reflection of who we are as professionals and human beings. I make a concerted effort to watch and analyze how people communicate in meetings, negotiations and in the media. Sometimes it’s not about what they say but how they say it.

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Stop The Verbal Vomiting

Strategically Speaking: A Blog by Denha Media Group

After I premised the topic and introduced the guest, I started the interview on my public affairs show with, “Tell me about this event.” The guest on the other end of the line proceeded not only to tell me about the upcoming community event, but also about the history of the organization, the people they help, the money they have raised and all of their future events. Ten minutes into the interview, I began to think of the listeners flipping the station.

He was verbally vomiting all over my show.

I asked the first question and he answered about six in that 10-minute span. He barely took a breath and, in order for me to ask a second question and take back the show, I had to interrupt him. He was obviously knowledgeable about his topic, but he was ignorant when it came to being interviewed.

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Just Apologize and Avoid Running Into A Communication Crisis

Strategically Speaking: A Blog by Denha Media Group

I have come to the realization that we live in an extremely forgiving society, if you would just admit your mistakes and apologize.

So why do so many people struggle with the “I’m sorry?”

Public figures — especially — need to understand the basics of crisis communication. When you make a mistake, you need to apologize, fix it and move on.

Here we have two elected officials who have found themselves in the proverbial “hot water” because of bad judgments and bad behavior. One apologizes and the other does not.

Following President Obama’s State of the Union address, in a Capitol office, a New York reporter was interviewing Congressman Michael Grimm. Apparently, the New York Republican became very angry when asked about an investigation into his 2010 campaign fundraising activities, so he threatened to throw the reporter, Michael Scotto, off a balcony.

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Digging Up The Buried Content That Tells Your Story

Strategically Speaking: A Blog by Denha Media Group

When it comes to messaging and marketing, it’s all about the content. You have to know your story but sometimes that valuable information is hidden. So start looking in all your files for that data.

Here are some strategies for creating and reusing that content.

Repurpose it!

When is the last time you took inventory of your content and thought of ways to repurpose it? You may have articles, memos, notes and reports buried in files on your desktop or drawers that can be used to promote your business or service.

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