Sincerely Syreeta

On Sunday, October 21st, thousands filled Eakins Oval on Ben Franklin Parkway near the Art Museum to join in the 26th Annual Aids Walk/Run Philly awareness and fundraising event. I’ve never participated in an event like this before so when I was presented with the opportunity to join YouthBuild Philadelphia Charter School’s team [a sub team of the ActionAids Organization), I jumped at the opportunity.

I’m not sure why I didn’t realize it but this required me to wake-up at like, 6:30 a.m. in the morning. I have two children and I’m still not a morning person so of course I was in the ultimate struggle to get up at 6:30 a.m. on Sunday morning. It literally got to a point where I had to remind myself–eyes closed and drool escaping my mouth–that this wasn’t about me or my rest, but about those who are greatly affected by this devastating disease and in need…

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Why are you stalking HER?

Come on! Am I really stalking a person if I visit their Twitter page over 10 times a day, or if I friend the friends of the person I so dearly admire?!?! Or what if I “Google” around to find any contacts that could get me just a step closer to voice I dream to hear? Call it crazy if you want, but thorough research is the foundation of a successful career.

Don’t knock what you never tried, and definitely never make judgement from the window; the only true way to success is to start on the path that has been imprinted with success. There is always somebody first at everything that experienced the challenges and have broken through the barriers so prosperity is more accessible for the dreamers who follow. Find that achiever who moves you to want to set milestones in your life and use them as a guideline to implement strategies of success in your own life; it’s not stalking, it’s called research. I have provided some tips below that have helped me get steps closer to my dream.

1. Start setting goals in your life. When it comes to a great career, nothing ever happens overnight; you need to really decide what YOU want YOUR purpose to be in your life and make it a happy profession. Take the time to draw out your steps to reaching your goal and cross them off as you achieve them.

2. Speak those things that are not as though they were. It may be a little rough in the beginning to get things started, but you must walk with faith and confidence. You have to know that you have the power to sell silence if it is presented and packaged well. Begin to carry yourself as a professional, which mean you need to act and dress like those in your playing field.

3. Everybody starts from the bottom. Get involved in your industry with an internship or volunteering with businesses that are similar to your goals. Pride is a big factor in whether you will have a successful career or not. Don’t ever feel like you are “too big to take an unpaid gig”. Sometime that’s what is needed to showcase your skills and ambition; besides you never know who is watching you!

4. Stalking is okay as long as it remains professional. Don’t be afraid to tweet an icon, or comment on some discussions and forums they may present. Engage with social media and initiate small conversation with strangers. The fact is, if you have something interesting to say, intrigued ears are eager to listen. Look at some of the activities your role model does and try to emulate them in your own way. As Rick Ross says “By any means necessary,” you have to want this so bad that you go to every angle to find hidden steps that get you to where you want to be.

5. Networking is the number one key to making the connections to the big people! Regardless of what point you are at in your life, have some networking card to share as you meet new people. Get out as much as you can and get involved in conferences and industry events. If you have to stalk your icon just to be in the same building as them, hey at least you are meeting people who may be associated with them in the process. The key is to meet people, which means when the business starts to take off, you are not chasing people, they are chasing you!

Do you REALLY need a publicist?

In today’s DIY era, many small businesses  have taken it into their own hands to do as much as they can for their business to keep cost down, including  public relations and marketing efforts. The idea of having a publicist can seem very grand, as T.V. portrays a sexy woman or crisp fella strutting along the red carpet or taking a host of photos with some of the industry’s top media. The reality is that is just a small portion of what a publicist does.

In the entertainment industry, a lot of times I hear that publicists are not being very productive or very useful in small businesses and brands. Furthermore, it has been said that most charge an exponential amount, but don’t deliver on the promise. I can’t doubt that this may be true in some cases; however in my journey of public relations I find that many just have the wrong understanding of what a publicist does and the line may sometimes become fuzzy.

Below is some clarity to help you in your PR needs:

1. We are not managers– When it comes to financial stuff, generally a manger or some other financial person handles how you generate and spend your money; all that is handled within your business and is irrelevant to what a publicist does. Also, we are not responsible for booking gigs; however setting you up for interviews with press, magazine features or other buzz generating event is our specialty.

2. We are not personal assistants– That mean handling all your business meetings and coordinating your schedules is really not what a publicist does. Even when the call or arrangement is PR related, there is procedures and processes for inquiries regarding clients; typically an email or phone number is provided for direct contact to the publicist representing the client. The client should never be a middle-man or third-party in the communications.

3. We are contracted professionals  for your business– If you hire a painter to come paint your house, all you do is get a quote on cost, tell them what you want, your goals and objectives, set a deadline, and come back when it’s done; the same applies for a publicist. Although we technically work for you, we are contracted to do a job that we specialize in, so that means typically we need our creative space.

4. We do not sell products or develop marketing campaigns– A publicist generates buzz around the brand or products. We develop brand campaigns which means is all about the business and its growth. We want the public to be familiar with the business, quality of products or services and how it is beneficial to the consumer. We do in some instance promote products, but the idea is for the public to be familiar with the brand behind the product.

5. Your budget will determine if you will need a publicist– You can’t make a dollar out of 15 cents, and you really can’t expect buffet style services if you only have enough for a value meal. Budgets are set to allow the publicist to work off what you can afford, which means if you have little to no funds it’s best to DIY.

I know this topic is pretty straight forward with no pun intended; it’s just a simplified way to prevent unsatisfied services. And just because I listed some of the roles does not mean that we don’t extend ourselves to go over and beyond what we do out of passion and wanting to see the business succeed, but for certain that can leave a spoiled client and fuzzy business lines. With any contractor you hire, you want to be sure you have researched their work and have spoken to others who have had work done as well.Ultimately, what you put in your contract is what you should deliver on as a publicist, and that will always keep the client happy.

Feels good to have your own!

I am so happy that I can introduce myself to the world officially as a publicist and I am extra delighted that Michael Thomas has given me the motivation to have my own! One thing for sure, two things for certain I will leave my footprint in the industry.

You can look forward to great interviews from some of the best PR practitioners and entrepreneurs in the industry as well as some updates on what going in Fashion and Entertainment. You can rest assure that I will be bringing you updates on Faithful by Michael Thomas as it hits the celebrity mixes and just about anything I put my hands on.

Hope you enjoy! XOXO