Our Founder & Director Lisa Devaney is heading back to UCL, for the third year, to present her DIY PR Workshop for
Startups and Entrepreneurs this month (February 20th) for the UCL Innovation and Enterprise programme.
Her afternoon workshop will cover all the tricks of the PR trade for getting news headlines for your startup at low cost – including exercises in writing pitch emails, and press releases (discussing when to do, or not to do one), and exploring social media opportunities. Between 30-50 participants will attend the workshop, which is open to those enrolled in UCL’s Entrepreneurship Programme.
Entrepreneurship Programme Manager Oli Pinch said about the workshop:
“Lisa Devaney is an expert in PR and has worked with UCL to deliver some fantastic training in how start-ups and new ventures can make the most of their limited resources to get noticed by the right people. Any entrepreneur (or would-be entrepreneur) needs to take advantage of this opportunity and sign up to this workshop!”
Adding a bit of fun to the workshop and ice breaking exercises, Devaney has brought along funny hats in the past, and this year she’s made a Native American-style “Talking Stick” to kick things off and get participants joining in discussions.
Find out more about UCL Innovation and Enterprise here:
Our Founder & Director Lisa Devaney will be back, for a second year, presenting to startups and entrepreneurs at UCL on Thursday, 2nd March, this week, with her DIY PR workshop.
About 30 attendants will participate in the workshop sponsored by UCL, where they will get insight on how to earn press coverage, and build social media presence, for their startup.
In the three-hour session, Devaney will cover:
- Developing communications strategy for your startup that will win headlines
- The tools of PR (email pitches, press releases, press lists, and more)
- Social media for startups and entrepreneurs
An honour to be part of the UCL offerings, this workshop is included with the UCL Innovation and Enterprise department. which launched last year. As part of UCL’s mission to support students pursuing entrepreneurial paths, they have seen more than 200 startups launch from the programme, including RecommendMe.
Here’s more information about UCL Innovation and Enterprise:
Our aim is to inspire a spirit of enterprise across UCL: to ensure that the economic and societal benefits of our research are fully realised. To achieve this, UCL Innovation and Enterprise brings together academics, the business community and other potential beneficiaries of our research in order to maximize its potential for commercialisation and ‘real world’ use. The goal is to secure our institution’s long-term place as a global leader in enterprise and innovation.
See more about the session here.
The Hai Media Group team will be presenting our DIY PR workshop for startups at Digital Shoreditch 2015 on Tuesday, May 12th. And there will be hats!
Digital Shoreditch 2015
Come along on May 12th and find out top tips on how you can get the word out about your startup to media and influencers, by doing-it-yourself. Our 40-minute workshop will teach you the basics and insider knowledge for writing headline-winning press releases, and using social media to drive attention.
Does this stuff work? CEO of Karisma Kidz Erika Broadnock took our DIY PR course at The Mobile Academy two years ago, and went on to DIY her own PR efforts. She’s now a regular guest with Sky News and is featured often in magazines and newspapers.
Can’t make Digital Shoreditch? We’ll be presenting our DIY PR workshop again this summer, and again in the autumn. Get in touch for more details to [email protected]
As fans of all things DIY PR, when we came we came across an amazing DIY PR story from Taiwan, we decided to share it with you here.
We’ve gotten to know Dan Bloom who is an American climate activist and journalist living in Taiwan. He’s best known as being the inventor of a new literary genre called cli-fi, a kind of sub-genre of sci-fi that defines literature and film that includes climate change in the storyline.
The self-confessed “envisionary futurist” graduated from Tufts University in 1971, where he went on to serve as the acting editor of the non-profit Polar Cities Research Institute. He has no formal training in PR, nor does he claim to be any kind of PR genius, but somehow he is making the world pay attention to cli-fi.
Even though Dan has no computer in his home, he has managed to win headline’s in the world’s leading media outlets about cli-fi. A guest article he did was recently featured in the Washington Post. Cli-fi has also been featured in US Wired, NPR, The Guardian, The Huffington Post and many more outlets since Dan first coined the phrase cli-fi back in 2007. Just this week he was included in a story about cli-fi in The New York Times.
So how does he do it? Well, we caught up with Dan by email, where he was writing to us from a smoke-filled café in Taiwan. Here’s our conversation with him:
Firstly, for those who don’t know, what is cli-fi, and how did it come about?
DB: Cli-fi is a new literary genre term first of all, and secondly a new literary genre, too. So it is both a term and a genre. It came about after I spent many months trying to find a way to get past the daily political debates about climate change and global warming, all statistics and scientists and leftwing rightwing people screaming at each other. I thought that maybe a better way to convey the dangers future generations will face in terms of the coming Climapocalyopse — not now but in 500 years or so — would be to create a platform for writers and screenwriters to use for novels and movies. So I set it up.
You were featured in an article published in Washington Post, that’s a pretty big deal! How did that happen?
DB: I read that the Post had a new section online called PostEverything where writers could submit commentaries on just about anything, so I queried the editors there and they said I could send my piece in on spec. And they used it.
You’ve also secured coverage for cli-fi in Wired US, NPR, The Huffington Post and many other outlets. These are amazing wins for any PR professional, what are tips you can share with those doing their own PR?
DB: Just as in retail the key to success lies in three words “location, location, location” so too does PR have an important rule which is this: “never give up, never give up, never give up.” And don’t take no for an answer.
Every genius has a strategy, what’s yours?
DB: I am not a genius. I am not even a professional PR person. I practice what I call guerrilla PR, street PR, sidewalk PR, never give up PR. I also had Lady Luck in my corner. Without Lady Luck egging me on, we wouldn’t be talking here. I owe everything to three things on this cli-fi PR campaign: Lady Luck, friends in the right places and an Internet that connects us all. In the old world pre-internet, I would still be at the starting line. The Internet made this possible.
Can you tell us more about your DIY PR tactics and strategy and how you are making this all happen with no computer, and just working out of a smoke filled café in Taiwan?
DB: I don’t really have an office or a game plan. I just wake up every morning and start emailing anyone I think might be able to help cli-fi find the right media placement. And I get up the next day and repeat the process. Because this work is important to me and for future generations, I have been doing this PR work daily Monday to Sunday, without one day off in 8 years. No vacations or anything. I just feel strongly about the emergence of the cli-fi genre, and this is not “work“ for me. This daily crusade is my vacation. It is relaxing and rewarding beyond words or payment. I don’t get paid for this. That is another reason I have been successful. This has never been about me or fame or money. This is about the most crucial existential time period we humans have ever faced. I am just a foot soldier in a large army of climate fighters. I feel honored to be part of something much larger than myself, and much bigger than a mere brand or product placement campaign. This is the fight of our lives now, and for our descendants in the future, if there are to be any.
Aside from creating literary genres, what other jobs do you do?
DB: This is all I do now, 24/7/365. I wake up every morning energized and ready to go. I am never tired. I have not taken one day off in 8 years. There is nothing else I want to do.
Is there anything more you’d like to share with us about cli-fi, DIY PR, life in Taiwan, the future of our planet Earth, or anything else that readers of this piece might find of interest?
DB: Fighting climate change problems and global warming impact events is now the job of every human being on Earth. But I am not a preacher, and everyone has to find his or her own way to joining the fight, either in small ways or large ways. And the last thing I’d like to add is this: the word Earth should have a capital E every tine it appears in a British or American newspaper or website. Many news outlets still write it in lowercase as “earth” but it is our Earth and it is home planet and deserves a capital E, even in The Guardian and New York Times. I recently asked Diane Ackerman the nature writer in New York about this and she emailed me in reply: Yes, we should always capitalize Earth in our newspapers and magazines.”
Are you working on any new PR campaigns connected to your cli-fi work?
DB: Yes, I am currently setting up a YouTube campaign called “Tell Your Climate Fears at #CLIFI YouTube hashtag videos.” I am asking teens and college students and of course adults worldwide, both cli-fi writers and cli-fi readers and also just young people who are concerned about the climate issues we face to post a short 1 to 3 minute video with the #CLIFI hashtag in the title of the video and to post it on YouTube or send it to me for me to post on my channel ”MrDanBloom’‘..and to tell their personal feelings about the possible Climapocalypse we face in the future, not now, but in the coming next 30 generations or so. So this is a chance for young people to make their feelings and voices heard about climate issues even if they never heard of cli-fi before.
Thanks Dan, and yes we love our Earth! And if you want to follow the conversation about cli-fi look for the hashtag #clifi.
By: Miamii Mansour and Lisa Devaney