It’s The Media’s Job To Tell The Story

I had the privilege of working with a gifted writer and strategist named Steve earlier in my career. He was a former reporter at the Chicago Tribune who was cut from that old-school cloth.

Steve always said what was on his mind, which most clients appreciated. But there were times when a few feathers got ruffled. Steve felt he always spoke the truth so it wasn’t his problem that some got bent out of shape.

Media is a Conduit to Your Donor

My first job in Chicago was with a small PR/communications agency. One day I was working with my supervisor on a campaign plan for a nonprofit client and she said something that has stuck with me throughout my career.

“The media is a conduit to your donor.”

Her point: The media isn’t the donor. Their readers, listeners and viewers are.

As you’re thinking about what story ideas and value to present to a reporter, blogger or podcast host, think about their audience and how you can add value to them…and how you can make the reporter look like the hero.

Nonprofit Leaders: Do you have a desire to change your outcome?

Six years ago I was stuck. I lacked the clarity and direction on where my business or career were going. I was frustrated.

I was busy working on the work, but I wasn’t working on myself or my business. Overwhelmed and stressed, I needed help.

I signed on with a coach. He pushed. Made me feel uncomfortable. Held me accountable.

Today, I have a clear path on where my business and career are going. It’s very different from where it was six years ago and my vision for my career is much more exciting. Helping people share their meaningful work in a meaningful way is the mantra I now live by.

It has taken (and still does) a lot of work, discipline, and a desire to change. Key phrase: A desire to change.

#47: An Effective Fundraising Strategy Starts With These 7 Steps [Podcast]

Joel Kessel Interviews Mary Valloni on "Conversations on Communications"


The one word that strikes a definite chord with any nonprofit organization.


The one word that is commonly uttered when said nonprofit discusses its fundraising.

Fundraising does not have to be frustrating as we learn on this episode of Conversations on Communications.

Before ever making the ask, there’s a lot of planning and preparation that needs to occur to increase your success rate.

Take it from a pro.

#46: The Importance of Internal Communications in an Organization [Podcast]

Joel Kessel Interviews Lee Caraher on "Conversations on Communications"

importance of internal communications

I don’t have to mention any names, but in the last several weeks we’ve seen organizations commit gaffes that blew up to become “PR nightmares.” Often, these are symptoms of a business that is out of alignment.

When a group of people move as a unit to reach a business goal,  we only see the surface and the end product. What we don’t see is the hard work and level of communication that goes on behind the scenes.

But good internal communication doesn’t just happen. It needs continual work that is intentional.

Be Part Of The Conversation

What’s trending? Being talked about a lot on social media and in traditional media? Do you have an opinion or something to say?

Know what’s going on in your industry. Follow the relevant reporters on Twitter, and put into place whatever monitoring system you use to follow and understand what’s happening in your world.

#45: Two Questions Every Author Needs to Answer [Podcast]

An interview with David Braughler of Braughler Books about self-publishing and book marketing

Two Questions Every Author Needs to Answer

You have a story to tell, but aren’t sure how to go about getting it into a book.

Figuring it out yourself is frustrating. There’s everything from copyediting, book marketing, to designing. When you look for help online, you don’t know who to trust or the best areas to invest your limited funds.

Enter David Braughler of Braughler Books.

David and his team work one-on-one with authors helping them publish a high-quality book by using a blend of traditional and digital printing methods, as well as electronic publishing and distribution.

David and his team guide every author through the process, ensuring that their finished book speaks to their readers.

#44: Highlighting Some of the Best Book Marketing Resources for Authors [Podcast]

Joel Kessel Shares His Insights in "Conversations on Communications"

Highlighting Some of the Best Book Marketing Resources for Authors

I developed a lengthy list of resources for authors to consider in this post here. It covers everything from Amazon’s algorithm and engagement through social media to search engine optimization and blogging, and much more.

In this podcast episode of Conversations on Communications, I highlight and discuss several of those resources. Keep in mind, just because a few activities may have worked for one author doesn’t mean they are going to work for you. Follow the game plan development approach as I outline in this post about frequently asked questions about book marketing, and be sure to follow the PESO model when it comes to the execution of activities.

#43: Know How To Engage Customers With Proven Marketing Communications Strategies [Podcast]

Joel Kessel Interviews Jason Janoski on "Conversations on Communications"

Know How To Engage Customers With Proven Marketing Communications Strategies

As an entrepreneur or business owner, you know marketing, communications and PR are important elements to the success of your organization.

There are so many ways to connect and engage. Digital marketing, marketing communications, content marketing, inbound marketing, outbound marketing, and the list of “marketing” goes on and on. How do we know which to use? Where do we start?