Brittney Borowicz

Brittney Borowicz is an integrated marketing professional with a strong communications background specializing in journalism, public relations and social media. Originally from the northwest suburbs of Chicago, Brittney has spent the past few years working with entrepreneurs and small start-ups in the Chicagoland area to enhance their marketing and social media efforts.

Prior to her current role as the marketing manager for a computer networking company, Brittney realized her affinity for all things media and marketing while working in radio and television and as a professional presenter. Later, she began working at a couple of small marketing agencies in Chicago as a Public Relations and Sales Director and Account Manager, which required her to be well-versed in coordinating specialized public and media relations strategies, creative marketing initiatives and cohesive sales process implementations.

As a strong believer in intimate consumer/brand involvement, Brittney helps her clients create content that engages and educates brand audiences while establishing each individual or company as a thought leader in their industry.

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My 5 Marketing Predictions (Plus 1 Wish) for 2015

As with every other industry on the planet, marketing is constantly growing and changing. From newspaper advertising to radio and television to digital media, the marketing industry strives to innovate and at times, just stay up-to-date with the most recent trend that is driving results.

2014 was the year of content creation. Content became the glue that held many marketing campaigns together. Intriguing content got people interested and kept them coming back. One thing that appears to be obvious is that the importance of content creation is not going anywhere in 2015. Here are five of my other marketing predictions for 2015.

  1. Content creation will become a company-wide effort. Right now, content creation is largely a task for the marketing team within a company. Why? Marketers know how to write, create visual media out of that writing and (supposedly) know what the consumers of their brand want. In 2015, companies will understand the importance of input for from all teams. Employees will be tapped for their expertise on different subjects that consumers really care about. For example, technical support staff can create content about the questions they are asked all the time about the products the company sells. This quickly and easily creates valuable content for many consumers
  2. There will be a greater value in community. Social media has been around for years now and while many companies and brands are using it to promote their products and services, they are ignoring one of their greatest assets… their fans. In 2015, companies are going to start to focus their marketing on their community. Not only will marketing become more engaging in order to interact with and build trust with that community, but companies will work harder to create brand advocates out of that community. In addition, sometimes the best content creation comes from those community members. Testimonials and stories from consumers can be repurposed into relatable and effective marketing opportunities.
  3. Content creation will move beyond the blog post. While some companies are still working on getting a blog onto their website and other companies are just trying to blog consistently, the movers and shakers of marketing will be moving beyond the stale blog post all together. Marketers will begin producing richer content and making content an experience for their consumers. An example of this will be marketers creating stories through videos, infographics, webinars, or even, yes, a blog post packed with visuals. These stories will be filled with valuable information that is designed to relate to the consumer without the hard sell of products and services.
  4. If it’s not on mobile, it’s not working. Over 60% of emails are opened on mobile devices first but conversion rates on mobile are unimpressive. This means that there is still a huge potential for marketers to better understand how mobile users behave and to utilize that information to build bigger and better mobile marketing campaigns. Mobile-first thinking will be a priority as mobile usage and mobile content consumption continues to grow.
  5. The customer is in control. With the influx of information available on the internet, businesses and consumers are spending more time researching the products and services of different companies before they buy. The buyer wants to know they are getting the best prices, the best products and the best services they can and with the internet, they have a choice of many different companies. Because of this abundance of information, the buyer is in truly in control of the buying process. Because of this, brands need to build their marketing campaigns around grabbing a consumer’s attention, gaining that consumer’s trust and then making sure that consumer comes back for that product or service time-and-time again.

In addition to my marketing predictions, I have one marketing wish for 2015:

My wish is for brands to find a balance between being present and being useful.

Brands constantly strive to be seen by their consumers. They want their consumers to see them, know them and then think of them when they need their product or service. Many brands actively stay present in their consumers’ lives through blog posts, email blasts and/or social media. The brands that are effectively marketing to their consumers though, are those who are providing useful information to their consumers such as video tutorials and how-to articles. 

Within the past year though, I have become annoyed. Many brands have become so concerned about being seen by their potential consumers, that they are no longer useful… just annoying. Everyone agrees that spammy, frequent emails are the worst, but some runner-ups include a boring blog post for the sake of having multiple blog posts per day and brand news that really isn’t news. 

Brands must start asking themselves, “will our customers and potential customers find our content to be useful?”

By all means, stay present! But find a balance between that presence and usefulness. Answer questions from your followers on social media and create new how-to videos for your products and services. I just ask that brands find that happy place between making sure their consumers and potential customers know them and the three-times-a-day-shoving-useless-content-down-your-throat emails.

"The Pitch" and How to Avoid Pissing Off Your Publisher

I graduated from the University of Illinois in May of 2011 with a degree in broadcast journalism. Nine stressful months, many long nights and very little pay later, I realized journalism just wasn’t for me. I looked into several different career paths where I could still utilize the skills I learned in journalism and eventually found my way to the marketing and public relations world.

I was called several names by my journalism peers such as “deserter,” “quitter” and more surprisingly, I was told that I was “working for the enemy.”

It is no secret that journalists and public relations professionals don’t always get along. Reporters and editors find public relations people to be annoying while PR people sometimes find journalists to be unresponsive and rude.

Because I have had the opportunity to work on both sides of “the pitch,” I have some basic tips for newbie PR pros looking to pitch their story to news outlets.

  1. Decide which (appropriate) news outlets you would like to run your story. Of course, most PR professionals want their client’s story to run in the biggest and best news outlets there are, but start small. Especially when you are first starting out in PR, it’s easier to contact, get noticed and develop relationships with the reporters and editors at smaller news outlets. You should also make sure that the news outlets you choose are appropriate for your story. If you have a story or press release about the best flowers to plant this season, you wouldn’t want to pitch your story to a tech magazine (unless these are robotic flowers of course). Once these outlets are chosen, you can usually find contact information for the publication or show’s news team online.
  2. Quickly tell the journalist why you are calling or writing them. This should only be a few sentences to summarize your story or press release. Editors and reporters get pitched stories hundreds of times per day and don’t have the time to read or listen to every single one. If you are writing an email, consider using bullet points to emphasize the main concepts of your story.
  3. Explain why THIS story is important and relatable to the journalist’s readers. Some things to think about when creating your pitch include: proximity, timeliness, helpfulness or how-tos, novelty, magnitude, etc. This is another good opportunity to use bullet points when pitching the story through an email. Note: Not making your story relevant to the publication or show you are pitching to is a GREAT way to get your phone number blocked and your emails sent to the spam folder.
  4. Press releases are still important. If you have a press release for your story, attach it to the email you are sending. If you call the editor or reporter, ask them for their email address and let them know to expect the press release in their inbox immediately following the call. This is a good way to give a news outlet more information on your story after you’ve hooked them on your pitch.
  5. Say “thank you.” Ask the journalist if they will run your story in their next publication or on their next broadcast.  Whether that person says “yes” or “no,” thank them for their time and consideration. Some reporters and editors may give you a “maybe” or “at a later time.” If this is the case, do NOT harass them. One, MAYBE two, follow-ups to your initial pitch are appropriate. Note: Another GREAT way to get your number blocked or your emails deleted, is to spam news outlets with emails and phone calls.

Make sure the news outlet can contact YOU. End the email or the phone call with information on who they can contact if they have any further questions about the story. This also allows editors and reporters to contact you in the future if they are looking for content and think you may be a good resource.

There is no sure-fire way to get your stories published, but these are some simple steps to pitch journalists without turning them off to working with you now and in the future.

Feeling adventurous? Try pitching your story in 140 characters or less. The “Twitter pitch” is short and simple and forces you to find the true importance of your story in only a few words.

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Read my original post at Michael James Janowski's blog or download the PDF.