A few weeks ago, I had the pleasure of chatting with Shaun Tabatt for his podcast about my new book Inbound PR.
Shaun is a really great guy. I had such a fantastic time talking to him thanks to the thoughtful questions he was asking and just generally how nice he is. (Do follow his podcast!)
We had a long conversation about the PR industry, what got me to write a book and who would benefit from it but we also spoke a lot about how I began my career in PR, why I chose it and then why I chose to leave it.
Those personal stories is what I wanted to share with you today so below I have pulled out some of the key conversation points alongside the full podcast recording.
What propelled you to move in this career development direction? What were the starting points for you?
It was a course in Marketing during my first year at university in Germany where I studied International Business. I wanted to tap into as many disciplines as possible because I wasn't sure what exactly I wanted to do. At that time, social media was starting to peak and businesses were beginning to try to figure out how to jump on it. I signed up for Twitter back then and one of the first people I followed was Brian Solis who was a major inspiration for me and he motivated my interest in PR and communications. After that, I began reading, learning, writing and eventually working in PR.
You spent about three years in a PR agency, what were the catalyst and the red flags that got you thinking that something was broken?
At the beginning everything was very interesting and very new - for example, I was working with bloggers which was all new as well at the time. Eventually, though, I started feeling as if I was just on order-taker from the client pretty much doing what they were saying but then at the same time I wasn't necessarily seeing the impact of the work that I was doing. Also, I didn't feel like a trusted advisor to the client who takes them to the next level but more as someone who just implements what they want. At that time too I didn't feel like I was learning anymore, I stopped growing and developing new skills. I felt that I had expanded everything that I could learn and do in PR at the time. So I guess it was just the perfect timing when HubSpot reached out to me on LinkedIn about a job then.
You say in the book that blogging helped pave the way for the book - tell us how blogging propelled you in that direction?
When my passion for Marketing and PR started back at university, I saw a lot of the bigger influencers like Brian Solis, David Meerman Scott using their blogs to share what they know with their audiences so I decided to start my own blog to do the exact same thing - that was 6 and a half years ago. Since then, I've been using my blog as my own vehicle to share what I am learning, things that I am reading or experiencing - really everything around my career. When I joined HubSpot and started mastering inbound marketing as a discipline I began to compare it with what I had been doing prior to that in PR. I was consulting other agencies as our HubSpot partners and seeing first-hand what they were doing for their clients vs. what I was doing for my clients back in the previous PR agency. I then identified a link between the two disciplines - content and measurement - which was the tipping point for me when I came up with this concept of Inbound PR. The first post I wrote about it was in July 2015 called Don't Believe in Inbound PR? This Post Will Change Your Mind. I began blogging more, people started commenting and responding that it all makes sense. I was invited to do public speaking. Generally, I was receiving some very good feedback about the content and what I was trying to do.
We spoke also about what inbound is, what PR is, what the difference and the link between them is, media relations, PESO, outdated agency tactics, behavioural change, vanity metrics vs true ROI measurement, and more that you can listen to here:
If YouTube is not the space for you to listen to such recordings, here are other options for you to enjoy the podcast:
- Listen to it on iTunes
- Listen to it on Spotify
- Stream by clicking here
- Download as MP3 by right-clicking here and choosing “Save Link As”
Not only did Shaun post the podcast hours after we recorded but he's been helping spread the word about the Inbound PR book on his social accounts, for example with tweets like the ones below:
If you only read one new #PR book in 2018, make sure it's @Inbound_PR_Book. Watch or listen to my interview with @IliyanaStareva to find out why this is one you've been waiting for. https://t.co/sl7xjHiyJc@HubSpot @WileyGlobal #marketing #NewBooks #MustRead #ShaunTabattShow pic.twitter.com/y9UDgX4ekm— Shaun Tabatt (@stabatt) April 26, 2018
I hope you enjoyed the podcast.
What propelled you to start your career in your chosen field?