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How I Used to Work with Influencers

[fa icon="calendar'] 14-Jan-2020 09:00:00 / by Iliyana Stareva posted in Public Relations, Inbound PR

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A few weeks ago, I shared how I started my career in PR and where it got me. (If you haven't read it, check it out and come back.)

In my early days, I used to do a lot of traditional media relations as in pitching journalists and national media. Shortly after that, came the influencers - the bloggers and the YouTubers. Instagram wasn't big at that time. 

I wouldn't say that the influencers changed the game on how to do proper media relations. Regardless whether you're pitching journalists or bloggers, YouTubers and Instagrammers, the principles are the same if you want to do it right.

But the very key principle is to treat them like human beings who have their own goals, needs, ways they like to communicate and make decisions. 

You need to be a bit like an anthropologist if you want to succeed when working with influencers. 

But let me tell you about a typical scenario that I used to encounter almost every week when I started working in PR and had to deal with influencers.

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How I Started My Career in PR and Where it Got Me

[fa icon="calendar'] 17-Dec-2019 09:00:00 / by Iliyana Stareva posted in Public Relations, Personal Development, Career

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I started my career in PR. 

That was a conscious choice, I wanted to do PR. 

When I was at university doing a BA in International Business in Germany, you could say that I fell in love with Public Relations during a module in Marketing where I got exposed to PR for the first time. 

That was also the time when social media started to pick up and businesses were trying to figure who owns it and how to do it for their benefit. 

Authors and prominent PR pros like Brian Solis and David Meerman Scott got me more hooked and so I decided the follow PR as my career.

But a degree in International Business is not the typical path to get into PR, especially because you don't learn anything about press releases or working with the media. 

So I had to learn all that by myself. How? Through books and internships. 

I decided that if I wanted to get a job in PR immediately after I graduated, I had to gain practical experience. 

So after my first year at university, I found a small social media agency in a town in Germany close to where I was living at the time and interned there for three months for free. 

Was it easy - for the first time working in such a professional setting and without getting any money?

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The 4 Ingredients of a Successful Inbound PR Campaign

[fa icon="calendar'] 27-Nov-2019 08:00:00 / by Iliyana Stareva posted in Public Relations, Inbound PR

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Every forward-thinking PR or marketing professional will tell you that top-down, “push” messages no longer work.

We live in a world that’s gone inbound. A world where to be successful with your communication you need to rely on methods that pull people into your brand rather than interrupt them with irrelevant content.

This is exactly what Inbound PR is all about – it’s a whole new philosophy on how to do PR in the modern, digital world.

Its methodology focuses on two key areas – content and measurement.

Remarkable content created and shared on the right mediums is the most successful way to reach your audience, or as we normally say in inbound – your personas.

Measurement then is essential to 1) gauge the success of your campaigns and 2) improve as you go.

All of this sounds very logical and kind of simple but its actual execution is what most companies and professionals have major difficulties with.

Through my work as a PR professional and an agency business consultant, I’ve found that most businesses struggle to transform towards Inbound PR because of fear.

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80+ Influencer Marketing Statistics [Infographic]

[fa icon="calendar'] 14-Nov-2019 08:00:00 / by Iliyana Stareva posted in Public Relations, Marketing

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I've been doing some work on influencer marketing recently and specifically on why use it, best practices, examples etc.

I'm not going to go in the discussion around whether influencer marketing is the same thing as PR or not, whether it should be PR doing it or the marketing department. 

I'll just say that when I was working in a PR agency back 6-7 years ago, I was engaging a group of young beauty bloggers in a very similar fashion as influencer marketing preaches. 

Anyway, back to my research.  I've published a list of influencer marketing statistics before but I figured it's time to update that and share a new list that's more recent. 

So when I came across an infographic from smallbizgenius I knew I had found what I needed. 

It's a long and detailed infographic with more than 80 influencer marketing statistics. 

You can check out the infographic below but first, here are the stats that got my attention:

10 Top Influencer Marketing Stats:

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How Inbound PR Came About

[fa icon="calendar'] 27-Aug-2019 09:00:00 / by Iliyana Stareva posted in Public Relations, Inbound Marketing, Inbound PR

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Do you remember the days when Twitter had just come out and people were trying to figure out how to use it for business?

I do. In fact, I became fascinated with social media for business. I was still a student but I could already see the massive shifts happening in the communications world.

Even though I studied International Business, my passion for comms made me follow big names such as Brian Solis and David Meerman Scott who were pioneers in how to do PR the modern way.

And so I decided to pursue a career in PR. I read every book on PR that I could get my hands on, I interned in PR and I worked part-time in a PR agency during my final year at university.

I tried to learn everything I could.

I did everything - I wrote press releases, I pitched national and regional media through email and cold calls, I worked with bloggers, I managed social media channels.

It was great. I learned a lot.

But I could see that even though I worked so hard and my agency team did too, we were basically just slaves in the eyes of the client. They didn’t consider us strategic advisers. We were just implementers and every time we tried to convince the client to do something new, it was close to impossible.

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