Pam Gilchrist Celebrates Winning Three 2012 PRSA Blacksmith Awards With Strauss Troy’s Lucy McCormack (l) and Richard Colvin (r)

Leadership communications strategist Pamela Gilchrist earned a top Blacksmith award and two silver awards from the Public Relations Society of America Cincinnati Chapter for her work with law firm Strauss Troy Co., LPA.

Gilchrist earned awards for her brand identity research for the law firm’s recent rebranding initiative, the brand announcement news release and corresponding media placements. The Blacksmith entries were judged by a panel of independent judges from the Orange County, California PRSA Chapter.

Judges comments on the brand research included: “The research was excellent with solid outcomes. Beautiful graphics. Excellent results. This could not have been an easy task.” With one judge giving the work a rare perfect score of 100.

Additionally judges comments on the news release and resulting news placement on the front of the Sunday Business section of the Cincinnati Enquirer were: “Very comprehensive release touched on all aspects of the firm’s culture and purpose.” And, “Excellent placement…the company leaders should be very pleased.”

The research methodologies Gilchrist used included quantitative research, benchmarking, industry trends analysis and qualitative research to build a research-based brand platform and gain shareholder buy-in.

“Pam is a tremendous asset and this award is confirmation of the quality services that she provides. As we continue on our aggressive growth path, her leadership in cultivating opportunities that have big impact will continue to be invaluable. These awards are validation of this work,” said Attorney C. Richard Colvin, chair of Strauss Troy’s marketing committee.

“As we looked to the future, it was essential that we better align our brand with both our high-quality heritage and our penchant for providing personalized innovative solutions,” said Strauss Troy President James G. Heldman. “The branding work that Pam Gilchrist has done has really upped the firm’s game.”

About Pamela Gilchrist

Nationally recognized author and speaker Pamela Gilchrist, MA, APR, CPT, is chief strategist at the Gilchrist Group®. She optimizes outcomes to close the gap between strategy and success. Her work focuses on breakthrough business strategies, change leadership and high-impact communications.

Gilchrist has held top leadership communications posts inside three Fortune 500 companies and has consulted with organizations across the country to guide executives through a myriad of change initiatives, mergers and acquisitions and growth strategies.

She is president-elect of the National Speakers Association Ohio Chapter where she was recently named 2012 Member-of-the-Year and is also is featured in their new marketing strategies book: Speak More! Gilchrist is Accredited in Public Relations (APR) by the Public Relations Society of America (PRSA) where she is a member of the Counselor’s Academy and has earned PR Professional-of-the-Year, Best in Show and many top honors including the Golden World Trophy from the International Public Relations Association (IPRA). Pam has earned top honors from Bulldog Reporter and has presented her Expert Influence™ Academy program at its national conference. Gilchrist holds a master’s degree from The Ohio State University and a bachelor’s from Western Michigan University.

About Strauss Troy

Since its founding in 1953, Strauss Troy has stood apart from the competition by providing the highest-quality legal services in the most personalized, prompt and economical manner possible. As a full-service law firm, Strauss Troy has diverse expertise and a history of proven success. No matter what issue you face, the firm has the right professionals, working together as a team, to get you the answers you need quickly and affordably. Learn more at www.strausstroy.com.

Strauss Troy’s areas of practice include: Corporate | Business, Criminal | White Collar Defense, Domestic Relations | Family Law , Labor | Employment, Litigation, Municipal | Government, Real Estate | Finance, Tax Planning | Compliance and Trust | Estate Planning.

Strauss Troy is recognized as a leading law firm in the Greater Cincinnati | Northern Kentucky region and is a Martindale-Hubbell Top Ranked Law Firm™ in Fortune Magazine. The firm is recognized as a U.S. News & World Report Best® Law Firm, and many of its attorneys are honored as peer-rated Martindale-Hubbell AV® Preeminent™ Attorneys, Best Lawyers® in America, Super Lawyers® and Rising Stars. The firm is also listed as a top law firm by the Cincinnati Business Courier.

 

Enjoyed sharing personal branding strategies at NSA Ohio this weekend. We all have a brand, whether we know it or not. So be intentional. Image-crafting matters. As Bill Stainton said, you never know when a client or prospect is near. He was traveling on an airplane, reviewing his notes for a speech, when the woman sitting next to him said “You must be our speaker!”
While we work hard to craft a professional personal brand, perhaps Jeff Bezos, Founder of Amazon said it best: “Your brand is what people say about you when you’re not in the room.”
It is critical that your personal brand is aligned with your authentic self, intentional, aligned with your go-to-market strategy and crystal clear.
If you want to learn more, pick up a copy of Speak More and read my section “Get Passionate About Personal Branding.”

I will share my passion for Personal Branding and PR at the NSA Ohio ProTrack seminar on March 17, 2012. Look for insider secrets in future blog posts.

If you are a professional or emerging speaker this session is for you. At the seminar you will learn how to build a strong personal brand, develop a go-to-market roadmap and become a well-known “Expert with Influence™.”  The session will include tips on thought leadership, content strategies, website integration, public relations and social media.

Fellow NSA Ohio Speaker Jim Canterucci, CEO, Transition Management Advisors and Sarah Storer, senior content marketing strategist, The Karcher Group, will also present a session on social media. The live event will be streamed online using ustream. It begins at 9:00 a.m. at the Downtown Technology Center, 423 E. Town Street, Columbus, Ohio 43215. For information visit: www.nsaohio.com

About:

Professional Speaker Pamela Gilchrist Shares Her Passion For Personal Branding & PR

Pamela Gilchrist, an international award-winning, Fortune 100 leadership and communications expert,  shares her wit and wisdom on Business Strategy | Change Leadership | Brand Presence | Influencer Engagement with corporate and association audiences across the country. As chief strategist and CEO at the Gilchrist Group®, she advises organizations on how to have more impact by focusing on breakthrough business strategies, brand identity and influencer engagement. She is well-known for her high-level C-suite coaching on thought leadership, executive presence and personal branding.

The Gilchrist Group®,is a strategic business consulting firm specializing in business growth, executive leadership and high impact communications. The firm has deep expertise in guiding organizations through times of significant growth and change. Founded in 1999, the international award-winning firm has significant Fortune 500 experience and serves clients in a wide-range of industries across the country. Learn more: gilchristgroup.com

As chief strategist at the Gilchrist Group®, Pam advises executives on how to have more impact to improve perceptions and connections. Organizations that need results during times of growth and change seek Pam out for her proven methods including: go-to-market roadmaps, executive coaching and high impact communications designed to increase influence and engagement.

A former Fortune 100 leadership and communications executive, she has held key roles inside multi-billion dollar companies and advises organizations across the country using her proven international award-winning leadership and communications methods. From business unit launches to crisis communications, Pam has counseled executives for more than 25+ years on how to improve impact by focusing on breakthrough business strategies, next level leadership and branded communications.

Pam’s combination of vision, executive management expertise and guidance helps organizations achieve maximum results. She has earned the highest honor in the PR Industry – a Golden World Trophy from the International Public Relations Association (IPRA) for her customer engagement work at a Fortune 500 company before she turned 30. She was named PR Professional-of-the-Year by the Cincinnati Chapter of PRSA and her work has been declared “Best In Show” by her peers.

To book Pam to speak at your next event or to see her 2012 catalogue of speaking topics visit: www.pamgilchrist.com. You can follow her on twitter @pamgilchrist.

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Sharing from my friends at MarketingProfs — because I couldn’t say it any better myself…

A guest post by Margie Clayman of Clayman Advertising.

I had an interesting conversation the other day about branding. During the course of  the talk, one participant said something along the lines of: “Well, I think we are pretty much done with traditional marketing concepts. Times are changing.”

I fear that this kind of sentiment is pervading the world of social media—and not too slowly. Look at all the new definitions of a simple marketing concept like ROI (return on investment). Look at how the word “branding” has been so twisted that many people now think a brand and a logo are the same thing.

We are in some serious trouble here.

Marketing Facts You Can Count On

Let’s talk about the argument that “social media has changed everything” in marketing. Now, you’d be silly to say that marketing is exactly the same as it was 1,000 years ago, right? You can trace how just print advertising has changed over the last 150 years. But even though the world has changed in a lot of ways, some things remain stubbornly the same. Trees grow. The Earth revolves around the sun. You can rely on those facts. They don’t get ditched as soon as “the times change.” They may get updated a bit. They may have addendums. But they don’t get burnt up in the latest garbage heap.

Thus, it is with tried and true marketing and business concepts. Yes, the marketing world and the business world continue to change. Rapidly, in fact. But there are a few facts upon which we can rely.

1. You still need to make sure you are making more money than you are doling out.
2. Branding encompasses your reputation, how you relate to your customers, what customers expect of you, and your message across any and all platforms.
3. If you do not understand basic business or marketing principles, you run the risk of trampling your business (or your clients’ businesses) into the ground.

Those are just a few of the “traditional” concepts that people seem so willing to disregard.

Why the Hate?

The real question I have been pondering is: Why is there so great a desire to dispense with these foundational aspects of marketing and business?

The only thing I can come up with is that—maybe—if you did not work in marketing before social media exploded or if you did not study marketing, traditional concepts may seem intimidating. Folks who seem to be “gurus” on social media may not really feel that they can come out and say, “Gosh, I don’t really understand this.” And so, alternative realities are created.

I can’t really think of any other reason why such elemental concepts are being abandoned recklessly throughout the online world.

What do you think lies behind this seeming dislike of basic marketing concepts? Have you run into it in your own online reality? I’d love to hear your thoughts!

(Photo courtesy of Bigstock: Man Sticking His Tongue Out)

Margie Clayman is director of Client Development at Clayman Advertising.

http://www.mpdailyfix.com/why-are-marketers-hating-on-traditional-marketing/?adref=nlt031512&utm_source=mpt&utm_medium=myview&utm_campaign=basic&utm_term=strategy&utm_content=post

Here is a good check-list to protect your brand. Mostly geared toward product companies, but could also be applied to professional service organizations.

Pam

1. Recognize that a product is only as good as the customer experience

First impressions count. To identify all the elements that contribute to a good customer experience, include production and customer-facing personnel in your product-development process. Then, take steps to ensure that everything is in place.

2. Attempt to anticipate and address potential problems

Before going to market, test all aspects of the product’s delivery. Defects tarnish the company’s brand, and service calls erode profit margins.

3. Provide customers with recourse in the event of a product failure

Mistakes happen. So, always provide customers access to someone who can take corrective action—ideally by phone, with 24/7 availability. Many customers will forgive product failures if they can reach an empathetic support person who remedies the situation.

It’s insufficient to refer customers to prepared “frequently asked questions.” First, company personnel often miss questions that real customers have. Second, customers regard answers that don’t squarely address their questions as defects, rather than signs of their own inadequacy.

4. Treat customers with respect

Avoid keeping customers “on hold.” Staff support lines with sufficient personnel. Many people find it particularly galling to sit on hold while they wait for someone to fix a product they bought to improve their productivity.

When call volumes are especially high, give customers the option of receiving a call back. Also, consider releasing them (and their phone lines) while researching problems or documenting cases that don’t require customer input.

5. Empower employees to take corrective action

My problem was easy to address. The issue was a mismatch between a code included with the product and the company’s database of authorized product keys. The frontline support person could have done exactly what his superior did—resolve the problem right away.

6. Set expectations

This company had sold “fear” of operating without its product, thereby contributing to an expectation that the company would resolve problems quickly. By taking 24 hours to connect customers with support personnel, the company sent a very different message.

Rather than leaving expectations to chance, let customers know how long it will take to get an initial callback. Then, tell them when they can expect a resolution to their problem.

7. Attend to your social media outposts

In the past, dissatisfied customers told 10 people about their bad experience. Today, they can inform thousands with just a few keystrokes.

When they don’t get satisfaction via normal channels, unhappy customers may turn to social media to share their disappointment. Nevertheless, companies that monitor their brands on social media can often turn a bad situation around, before it gets out of hand, if they respond quickly and offer to address the problem.

8. Follow up for continual improvement

Follow up, learn, and improve. Step one is to have a process for capturing and eliminating errors. Step two is to fix the process to avoid future problems.

One company I know classifies a shipment as “dead on arrival” if anything it’s done, or has failed to do, interferes with the customer’s experience. That organization convenes for cross-functional meetings weekly to review DOAs, delve into the root cause of the problem, and develop a course of action to ensure that the problem does not recur.

Source: Marketing Profs & Barbara Bix of BB Marketing Plus