A Picture Can Still Tell A Thousand Words

by Jim Pasinski on June 9, 2009

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By Jim Pasinski

PR professionals must be on their toes when it comes to securing coverage for their clients or businesses in today’s ever changing media landscape. However, the adage that a picture can tell a thousand words sometimes still holds true.

Carr Marketing Communications recently used pictures for Buffalo’s Titan Wrecking & Environmental surrounding a planned building implosion in Pittsburgh, Pa. In this case, the pictures truly did tell the story.

We geared up the media relations project about a week before the event (Sunday, May 17). With several safety and security factors in play, we reached out to inform the local media in advance to ensure they had enough preparation time to cover all of the logistics.

The Sunday morning staging of the implosion worked to our advantage as it was likely to be the story of the day in the Steel City. Our pitches to the local TV outlets were made in the hopes of securing the best possible option: live, local television coverage of the implosion, as well as national attention.

Since there was no historic significance to the 20-story apartment building that was coming down (other than neighbors who were happy to see it go), it was more of a challenge but we requested the Pittsburgh stations provide a live feed of their coverage to the national cablers.

The implosion went off without a hitch just after 9 a.m. and was witnessed live not only by tens of thousands of households in Pittsburgh but across the U.S. and around the world via the Fox News Channel. Minutes later, the implosion ended up on CNN and Headline News.

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The resulting media coverage provided a good reality check on the state of the media and how it is constantly evolving. In addition to reporters and photographers, the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette and Pittsburgh Tribune-Review newspapers both gave heavy play to the implosion on their Web sites thanks to video they shot on their own.

Garnering media coverage is becoming increasingly challenging given the limited reporting staffs and the need to feed the Internet monster. But sometimes the picture will help you meet the challenge.

We also shot video (in HD) for Titan from multiple locations as part of the project and provided coverage to Buffalo media and posted it on YouTube. Not surprisingly, many aspiring amateur journalists also shot video of the implosion, which found its way onto YouTube as well.

As a wrap-up to the project, the Carr team created a brief video montage of our own video and photo coverage (with a few TV clips to boot) for placement on the Titan Wrecking & Environmental Web site. See the montage here.

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