Sports and entertainment public relations is often viewed as a glamorous career choice. These pros typically provide counsel to celebrities or area elites, but it’s far from easy work. So, we took the time to learn from an all-star PR panel to get the inside scoop about entertainment PR. Those panelists were:
- Kevin Grigg, VP of public relations at the Detroit Pistons
- Tatiana Grant, owner of Infused PR and Events
- Andrea Bogos Trapani, managing partner at Identity PR who represents Motown Museum
We learned a lot about many areas of the business including:
Kevin shared that from a sports perspective, it all comes down to storytelling and prioritizing media requests. He said that the state of the team at any given time plays a factor into media requests and how they tell the Pistons’ story. He also mentioned that one of his favorite accomplishments is working with players on their storytelling abilities and seeing their growth season-over-season, year-over-year.
Tatiana indicated that being an entertainment PR pro means entering into a true 24/7 job, and that often after building trust with a client, you become a true partner. In fact, she said she feels like family to some of her clients. Needless to say, telling your family’s story in the right way at the right time with the right audiences is essential to success.
Andrea said that entertainment PR pros have to be ready at any given moment, even when it’s seemingly unrelated to the client. For example, although Aretha Franklin wasn’t a signed Motown singer, when the legend passed away, the Motown Museum was flooded with inquiries, visitors and more. The team had anticipated this and was prepared to tell her story as a Motown icon she was (despite the ‘real’ contract).
Kevin said that for the Pistons, he focuses on keeping crises stories to a one-day news cycle. He said they accomplish this by telling the facts the moment they have them and being as transparent as possible so that there’s nothing further to ‘sniff out.’
Tatiana shared that she typically entrusts in a member of her client’s entourage, so that they can flag her if anything is going awry. This gives her team invaluable insider information for when they physically can’t be with the client. This trust has even led to her changing her client’s social media passwords if they’re having a wild night on the town, and that trusted point person gives her a heads-up.
New Pro Tips
Tatiana: “As a new pro, don’t take things personally. People may not respond, and that’s OK. Just be persistent and professional.”
Andrea: “We’re entering a time in our society where expertise is the “x factor,” so you have to show off your area of expertise.”
Kevin: “Be succinct and show off your personality when you start your career. Present yourself in a way that is appealing and pay attention to verbal and nonverbal cues of everyone around you.”
Many thanks to our panelists; moderator Antonice Strickland Jackson, senior account executive at Truscott Rossman; and host and sponsor, Identity PR.
Check out our upcoming events – we hope to see you soon!
Bonus – you can see the Facebook live of the event here as well.
Feature photo from Identity PR
Megan Bonelli (formerly Peterson) is a Senior Account Executive and Franco and a Detroit PRSA board member/blog committee chair.
PRSA Detroit Chapter’s Entertainment PR: Not All Glitter & Gold panel, hosted by TR's own Antonice Strickland Jackson.#PRSADetroit
Posted by Truscott Rossman on Thursday, August 22, 2019