Denver PR Blog


City Council Tries to Replace DPS as Villain While Denver Teachers Strike
February 13, 2019, 8:49 am
Filed under: Public Relations

They say timing is everything, a truism that Denver City Council members apparently are not aware of.  While Denver teachers are on strike fighting for what they say is a living wage, council members “voted unanimously Tuesday to move forward a proposal that would raise their own and other elected leaders’ salaries by the maximum amount allowed by law.”

Denver Post: “Under city law, the salaries for elected officials are up for review every four years. Right now, Denver City Council members make about $92,000; the council president makes $103,000; the auditor and clerk make $148,000; and the mayor makes $171,000.” …

“For comparison, Aurora voters narrowly approved a measure to raise council members’ pay to about $19,000, while their mayor makes $80,000. Denver council members also significantly out-earn state legislators, who just got a raise to about $40,000 a year. The governor makes $123,000.”



Instacart Offers Instapology
February 7, 2019, 10:24 am
Filed under: Public Relations

Tech Crunch: “On the heels of a recently filed class-action lawsuit over wages and tips, as well as drivers and shoppers speaking out about Instacart’s alleged practices of subsidizing wages with tips, Instacart is taking steps to ensure tips are counted separately from what Instacart pays shoppers.”

“In a blog post today, Instacart CEO Apoorva Mehta said all shoppers will now have a guaranteed higher base compensation, paid by Instacart. Depending on the region, Instacart says it will pay shoppers between $7 to $10 at a minimum for full-service orders (shopping, picking and delivering) and $5 at a minimum for delivery-only tasks. The company will also stop including tips in its base pay for shoppers.”



Great Moments in Spokesmanship
February 5, 2019, 12:04 pm
Filed under: Public Relations

One of the cardinal rules of crisis communication is “Don’t Drag Your Partners Into Your Problem.” It appears that is a rule that representatives of Pittsburgh Steelers wide receiver Antonio Brown haven’t quite figured out yet.

The Hollywood (Fla.) Police Department confirmed to ESPN that Brown is the subject of an investigation relating to a domestic dispute that allegedly occurred last month. When Brown’s attorney was asked about the investigation, he responded, “We have no comment on the situation. We are focusing our attention on a new shoe (Antonio) just released with Nike.”

I put the over/under on Nike dropping Brown as a representative at two days.

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SE2 Study Finds Legacy Denver Media Still Rule
January 25, 2019, 11:02 am
Filed under: Public Relations

Issues management firm SE2 has crunched the numbers, and determined that:

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Interestingly, the Colorado Sun has already jumped to the #11 spot in terms of unique monthly visitors, ahead of more-established media outlets such as 5280, Denverite, and the Denver Business Journal.



A Tough Week for Metro Denver School Districts
January 25, 2019, 9:14 am
Filed under: Public Relations

cpr21742A work strike is at its heart a public relations battle. Economic leverage and political influence are only as strong as the strikers’ ability to win the hearts and minds of the public.

That is why Denver Public Schools’ misstep last night – a letter sent to teachers threatening to report visa-holding teachers to immigration authorities – hurts so much. They lost a bit of their moral high ground at a pivotal negotiating moment, and no doubt increased solidarity among teachers. DPS spokeswoman Anna Alejo quickly apologized for the letter, calling it an “incorrect communication” and an “error.”

Denver Public Schools wasn’t alone this week with its misstep. Douglas County Schools is continuing to address the fallout from one of its middle school teachers who incorrectly identified the Covington Catholic student at the center of the Lincoln Memorial viral video and then doubled down by alleging he was a member of “#HitlerYouth.” (Side note: I imagine there is a long line of defamation attorneys lined up at that student’s house.)

DougCo quickly suspended the teacher, but the school board was not in the mood to dwell on the issue. As Erin Powell at 9News reported last night, the board selectively enforced its civility rules and had a sheriff’s deputy remove a speaker from the room for merely citing the teacher’s name. If the goal was to minimize media coverage, that failed spectacularly.

 



RunSwitch PR Representing Covington Catholic student
January 22, 2019, 2:39 pm
Filed under: Public Relations

Covington Catholic student Nick Sandmann’s family has retained Louisville, Ky.-based RunSwitch PR to help guide it through the media firestorm that ensued over the weekend. Grace Schneider of the Louisville Courier Journal reports:

Asked about its role, RunSwitch released a statement saying that the firm “has been retained by the Sandmann family to offer professional counsel with what has become a national media story. We are working with the family to ensure an accurate recounting of events which occurred this past weekend.”

RunSwitch partners Steve Bryant and Gary Gerdemann said that Sandmann family asked people they knew over the weekend about getting help with handling the media.

“They reached out to our firm, and we responded,” said Bryant, adding that the business specializes in crisis management “all over the country.”

Scott Jennings, a conservative political commentator and a columnist for the Courier Journal, is the third partner in RunSwitch. 

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Why McDonald’s Doesn’t Fight Social Media Wars
January 22, 2019, 2:07 pm
Filed under: Public Relations

Diana Bradley at PRWeek reports:

It seems Wendy’s can’t stop trolling McDonald’s on social. Burger King, too, attempted to make the Golden Arches the butt of the joke with its #WhopperDetour stunt last month. Year after year, McDonald’s has been a target for its sassy rivals – an easy one, too, mainly because the brand never defends itself or fights back. …

The principle McDonald’s has adopted is that no fighter in the history of boxing has ever won simply by blocking punches.

“You have to go on the offense,” said Jano Cabrera, SVP, U.S. comms, global media and PR at McDonald’s. “There has to be something you stand for that is appealing. What is the case, proactively, you are making?”

“The nature of leadership brands is you get to a point where you understand real ROI is being mindful of and responsive to competition,” he said. “But you don’t stay a leadership brand by simply responding to competition. You do it by continuing to innovate and staying customer-focused.”