PR Is A Team Sport: A Day In The Life With The GS&F PR Team

At GS&F, our public relations team works just as it would in an exclusive PR agency—executing traditional earned media, strategic partnerships, activation management and amplification, and more. But here, they also have the bonus of support from a larger team of fully integrated marketers.

 “We’re fortunate enough to have created a team built on friendship,” says Director of PR and Social Media Breck Rochow. “We have fun through collaboration, throwing around proactive ideas, and mixing personal conversations and connections into our workflow.”

We asked the team for the nitty gritty on how their days roll out—from rousing brainstorms to ideating unique strategies and pitching earned media opportunities. Here’s what they had to say.

At GS&F, We Stay Curious

Curiosity isn’t just a core tenant of GS&F’s values; it’s the key to elevating any PR practitioner from good to great. At the start of every day, our teams are challenged to scour online, broadcast, print content (and more!) for continued understanding of brand representation, media landscape and cultural mining. From creative campaigns and influencer-led programs to vertical-breaking partnerships, if it’s happening it’s our job to know about it and identify how we can use that knowledge to impact our brand plans.

“The most important thing we do as earned practitioners is start the day consuming the endless information that exists online, in print publications and on broadcast news,” says Rochow. “In order to do the best work for our clients, we have to understand the larger media landscape and how other brands and personalities exist within culture or category. The industry and categories shift so often that if we don’t stay on top of it, we’ll get left behind.”

Jamison Crenshaw, PR Account Coordinator, loves starting conversations online. “We’re constantly dropping articles we’ve read into our group chat to analyze and discuss them throughout the day and week,” she says. “We also attend webinars and panels through PRSA and other platforms and present our findings during weekly meetings.” Internal practices like this also help the team sharpen their presentation skills.

Then, the week ends with a PR Wins and Insights meeting. “We share highlights from the week and any interesting industry insights we’ve learned,” says PR Account Executive Hannah Raleigh. “Plus, it’s just a great time for all of us to catch up.”

Unique Plans for Unique Clients

When drafting messaging or creating amplification plans, one of the most important things to remember is that no two brands are the same. We tailor all strategies and tactics to fit each brand, cultural moment and purpose specifically. We’ll then weave in other areas of integrated support to make sure we’re using the resources we have at our fingertips at GS&F.

One of the best ways to get this done? A brainstorm. “We love to get different creative minds in the office together—virtually or IRL—to respond to a brief and brainstorm how to get from point A to point B,” Rochow says. “There are no rules in a brainstorm except to come prepared.”

Molly McCormack, PR Account Supervisor, sees creativity in the different hats the team wears throughout each week. “There’s a lot in the background, and we are always generating new ideas for our clients,” she says. “They rely on us coming to the table with innovative ideas consistently, then executing on those ideas and displaying results.”

Expect the Unexpected

We start each week off with an internal team meeting to level-set for the week—understanding hot items, where the team can jump in and support, and how to-do lists are shaping up. These are important steps to ensure we are working efficiently and learning from each other, but we all know things do not always go according to plan.

“Unexpected needs always come up,” says McCormack. “It comes down to staying nimble and driving constant communication both internally and externally to navigate each need successfully. We are quick to pull a brainstorm together and take advantage of the brilliant minds that surround us. We’re always driven by being ‘solutions-first’ rather than dwelling on the problem.”

At this point in post-pandemic life everyone in marketing is over hearing and using the word “pivot”—but for any PR professional, that word has always been part of our daily lexicon. Cultural shifts and news cycles can affect our day-to-day lives, so keeping an open mind and figuring out how to find solutions and make ideas even better is the name of the game.

Relationships and Results

“PR is all about relationship building,” says Charlotte Arnold, PR Account Coordinator. “From the media and influencers to internal connections and clients, it’s a big part of the job and incorporated into everything we do.”

With media and influencers, the more we can glean about their professional and personal interests the better. When reaching out to the media the cardinal rule is to understand their beat—what kinds of stories do they write and on what subjects? Reaching out to the wrong writer for the wrong story can be fruitless and may limit the impact the story has. With influencers, a campaign is most effective if it has authentic ties to the influencer’s interests and journey. The subject matter, content, copy and any amplification should feel like a natural addition to the platform of the influencer you’re working with.

The third and often most important relationship is the one we share with clients. We work in partnership and on behalf of their brands, so building mutual trust is important from the start. One of the best ways to do that is by establishing and monitoring progress on reaching agreed KPIs. Whether you are looking for unique views, dream publications or audience share via partnership, we track and report these regularly so we can show movement or make new plans if necessary.

Every plan is different—but our team’s approach remains the same, founded on curiosity, relationship building and working toward solutions for the unexpected. To see how that approach has played out for our clients, read more about diverse perspectives in influencer marketing with LP Building Solutions and how we reimagined influencer partnerships for Jack’s Family Restaurants.

Are you inspired to think about what a great PR team can do for your brand? Let’s get to work.

Want more of the good stuff?

Sign up to receive our articles once every few weeks, all wrapped up in a neat little email.