Everyone talks about how, as summer heats up in South Florida, business cools down. Although it is true that many people hit the road on vacation, while others spend weeks or even months at a time at their summer home, for those of us in public relations, summer provides the perfect opportunity to reach out to the media.
Many reporters actually find it difficult to track down long-time sources. This provides those of us in public relations with the chance to offer up new ones. I know that when I was a reporter, I often went back to the same tried-and-true sources for their insights and comment. But I always kept a Rolodex (that's how long I was in the journalism profession) of possible alternatives. Many of them later became my go-to people, even after the summer months ended and my usual sources returned.
Summer is also the perfect time to take advantage of those days when your clients are gone. While you may be tempted to take an extra-long lunch, or just ditch the office and head to the beach, this is actually a great opportunity to do some planning. Why not go through your media lists and make necessary updates? While you are at it, give some reporters/editors a call and see if they can make time for lunch.
Look at those editorial calendars that may have been pushed off to the side gathering dust while you were busy putting out daily fires. What opportunities are coming up that you might be able to pitch? Take the time to craft pitches today that can be used in the future.
If you write blogs for your clients, topic shop and write a few evergreens that can be put into the mix when things start to get busy.
Look for opportunities to sharpen your existing skills or learn new ones. Have you ever wanted to learn iMovie, Photoshop WordPress? Now is the time to start.
Yes, summer is a time for everyone to get a little R & R, but it's also the perfect time to take advantage of some downtime by building your skills, relationships and business.
Susan R. Miller is founder of Garton-Miller Media, a full-service, South Florida based public relations firm. Susan is a former journalist with more than 30 years of experience.
Garton-Miller Media is a full-service, South Florida-based public relations firm. Founder Susan R. Miller has 30 years of experience as a writer, journalist and PR professional.