Category Archives: Fletcher Prince News

A Summer Book Bag for PR professionals

book-sunglasses-beach_h528After what has got to be the snowiest winter ever, it’s finally here: summer.

Well, not technically until next week. But I’m already in summer mode, aren’t you? Rehoboth, here I come!

Do you read on the beach or by the pool? Here are some of my PR book recommendations. These are all enjoyable, as well as informative reads, with memorable anecdotes.

Hey, you’re on vacation, right? You may as well enjoy it.

Add a couple of these winners to your summer reading list….tell me your own picks in the comments!


Topic: Crisis Communications

Title: Crisis Communications: The Definitive Guide to Managing the Message (2013)

Author: Steven Fink


51rD7EqIw0LTopic: PR, Content Creation, and SEO

Title: Spin Sucks: Communication and Reputation Management in the Digital Age (2014)

Author: Gini Dietrich

51B3zEFka3LTopic: Design

Title: Steal Like An Artist (2012)

Author: Austin Kleon


Topic: Video Production (I’m looking at you, PR agencies!)

Title: How To Shoot Video That Doesn’t Suck: Advice to Make Any Amateur Look Like a Pro (2011)

Author: Steve Stockman


41YLFOpzvELTopic: Marketing

Title: Youtility: Why Smart Marketing is About Help, Not Hype (2014)

Author: Jay Baer

Important March dates

320px-St_Patricks_Day_Parade_MontrealWhat to tweet…what to blog…what to do…

You won’t lack for inspiration in March!  From the Oscars to Mardi Gras to the National Cherry Blossom Festival and Twitter’s 8th birthday, content and engagement ideas for Facebook updates, blog posts, and tweets abound.

Don’t forget my birthday on March 16! 🙂

Here are some conversation-ready dates to add to your editorial calendar in March.

Mar 1 – St. Patrick’s Day Parade, Alexandria
Mar 2 – Oscar Awards
Mar 2 – Read Across America Day
Mar 4 – Mardi Gras
Mar 5 – Ash Wednesday
Mar 6 – Birthday of Michelangelo (1475)
Mar 7 – South by Southwest Festival begins
Mar 8 – International Women’s Day
Mar 9 – Daylight Saving Time starts
Mar 11 – Special House seat election, Florida
Mar 16 – Mary’s Birthday (that’s me!) 🙂 @MaryFletchJones
Mar 16 – Freedom of Information Day
Mar 17 – St. Patrick’s Day
Mar 17 – Holi
Mar 17 – TED conference on Technology, Entertainment and Design (BC)
Mar 20 – First Day of Spring
Mar 20 – National Cherry Blossom Festival begins
Mar 21 – Twitter’s 8th Birthday (2006)
Mar 25 – Maryland Day
Mar 29 – Kite Festival (DC)
Mar 31 – Opening Day, Washington Nationals
Mar 31 – Hindu New Year

Looking Back at 2013: The Fletcher Prince Annual Report

happy fp logo

Every year, since I started this business, I write and publish an “annual report” for Fletcher Prince.  When I look back, I realize David and I accomplished a lot.   So here it is, our annual report: a great way to end the year on a positive note.

Fletcher Prince celebrates its sixth year in business. 2013 marked another year of delivering marketing and public relations services to clients and contractors, as well as community involvement, collaboration, and networking.

Client Work in 2013

Social media services and graphic design services were major project areas for us this year.

We worked with our existing clients Dominion Mechanical Construction, Keenan PR, and PRofessional Solutions, LLC. We also provided social media guidance to new clients Communications Ventures and Spark Media as well as graphic design services to Mopwater PR.  Some of our interesting projects in 2013 included working on a 20th anniversary marketing campaign for PRofessional Solutions, LLC and creating a multi-million dollar client-garnering sales presentation for Dominion Mechanical Construction.

Community Involvement and Service

Conversations in Public Relations

As a service to the Washington, DC area professional communications community, Fletcher Prince continues to produce videos for the YouTube seriesConversations in Public Relations,” featuring interviews with local communicators and association leaders. The 113 videos have received more than 79,000 views on YouTube.

Social Media Week DC

Fletcher Prince was the first public relations agency in the Washington, DC area to offer sessions for Social Media Week DC, and we resumed our commitment to the area-wide event for the second year in mid-February 2013. With the addition of guest podcasting expert and friend Ray Ortega of The Podcasters’ Studio, we presented two free seminars in Falls Church to a packed room, one on getting started with podcasting and the other on blogging about your favorite interests. You can view these presentations, along with the full length videos, on Fletcher Prince’s account on Slideshare.


Network-and-Lunch Events

We continued to offer Network-and-Lunch events around the DC area, periodically.  Special thanks go to Connie Rhind Robey and Leah Ibraheem for their ongoing support and organizing contributions!  Make plans to attend our next event at Chef Geoff’s in Tysons Corner on Tuesday, January 28.


Fletcher Prince Marketing Efforts in 2013

We continue to be grateful to our supporters. Our Facebook Page Likes increased by seven and we gained 41 new Twitter followers.  We also added our Social Media Week video presentations to our YouTube account.

The Fletcher Prince Blog is a labor of love and a big part of how we share our expertise and showcase our work. We surpassed 700 total blog posts in 2013.  Despite our decreased blogging volume of only 38 new blog posts in 2013, we earned nearly 23,000 views in 2013, bringing our total views to just over 94,000.  Our sincere thanks to guest bloggers Deborah Brody, Karen Hendricks, and Jay Morris for their contributions in 2013.

In Other News…

I attended the 2013 Washington PR Woman of the Year Awards as the guest of Fletcher Prince clients Kate Perrin and Melanie Jordan of PRofessional Solutions, LLC.  I am so grateful to Kate and Melanie for their year-long support and friendship. Fletcher Prince had an ad in the program for the event.


Thank You for Making 2013 a Great Year!

David and I would like to thank our clients for their business and look forward to an exciting new year.  I hope 2014 brings you much happiness and success.  Happy New Year!

Happy Thanksgiving

Happy Thanksgiving, everyone!6017_10200825327629540_1446704142_n 535809_10151322760914822_1037926143_n 563359_10151337865839822_1988235751_n 945126_569859743044291_1524346034_n 1452398_652873191409612_789087823_nToday, I am especially grateful to our Fletcher Prince clients, Facebook friends, blog subscribers, and supporters. 2013 was a fun year filled with work, networking, and giving back.  I’m thankful to know so many terrific professionals in public relations and marketing.

I hope your Thanksgiving is joyous and that you have just as much to be grateful for this year, and in the years to come.

Celebrate the Season with PR and Marketing Holiday Parties

16407127_sReady to network? Register now for these holiday events. You’ll meet some interesting people.  Here are some sure bets…

Wednesday, December 4

The One Party

RoseBar, 6 p.m. – 10 p.m.  Tonight is the local PR/Advertising industry’s biggest holiday bash, The One Party.  The multi-sponsored party (Capitol Communicator, DC Ad Club, PRSA-NCC, AMADC, etc.) typically draws about 200 people.

Tips: It’s loud and the drink lines are long, and no one ever dances, but it’s the ad community’s event to see and be seen, and admission includes two drinks and appetizer.  A mix of ages and backgrounds, this event skews to 20s and 30s and the advertising/creative set.  Almost everyone behaves.  Bring cards, but this one’s mostly for the photo-ops.  Register for the event ($55/60).

Tuesday, December 10

Holiday Network-and-Lunch

Clyde’s – Chevy Chase, 12 Noon – 1:30 p.m. Fletcher Prince organizes this small group business networking event. The conversation is casual and everyone pays their own way ($15 to $20).

Tips: Dress is business casual. Expect to meet a diverse group of six to twelve business owners and PR professionals, as well as yours truly.

PRSA-NCC Holiday Party

Carmine’s, 5:30 p.m. – 8 p.m.  Join the National Capital Chapter of the PRSA for holiday networking, drinks and Italian hors d’oeuvres in Washington, DC.

Tips: Network with a suited and mature crowd of about 50 PR professionals who know each other well.  There are chapter volunteer award announcements.  Better for chapter insiders. Bring a toy for Toys for Tots.  Register today.

Tuesday, December 17

WWPR Holiday Party

Tonic Restaurant, 6 p.m. – 8 p.m.  Join Washington Women in Public Relations for their Holiday Party in Washington, DC  The specialty of this Foggy Bottom restaurant is comfort food, including tots with a variety of sauces. All guests will leave with a party favor from WWPR and an early release of the 2014 schedule of events. Raffle proceeds benefit WWPR’s pro bono client, FLOW–Financial Literacy Organization for Women and Girls.

Tips: Both men and women attend these events, but the majority are fashionably attired, well-heeled female PR pros in their 20s and 30s, as well as a few seasoned pros with great connections.  A mannerly bunch, and a friendly crowd to newbies.

Have you created an editorial calendar? Here are some tips (video)

Today is Veterans Day (thank you, Veterans!) and many of you are off work. If you have some downtime, you may want to take a look at these editorial calendar tips, as you start to gear up your marketing, PR and social media plans for 2014. These are easy approaches that anyone can do.

For a free MS Word editorial calendar template, email me

Fletcher Prince

A social media editorial calendar can help you organize your content marketing efforts.

In this Social Media Week DC presentation, Mary Fletcher Jones of Fletcher Prince ‪‬ will talk about the advantages of creating a social media editorial calendar for your business, agency, or nonprofit organization.

Mary will suggest practical tips for selecting a format and creating an editorial calendar that is right for your goals and work style. She also provides advice on scheduling and frequency for various social media channels.

Download the slides and notes for this presentation here: ‪

This session was recorded live at Thomas Jefferson Library in Falls Church, Virginia on February 14, 2012 for Social Media Week DC.

Please excuse the production quality; it is not up to our usual standard since this is a video taken from a Livestream broadcast on a webcam — but we promised to make…

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4 Ways to Build Storytelling into Press Releases

Beyond PR

Assuming that you need to stick to dry language and a certain format when drafting a press release can limit the appeal (and ultimately the success) of your message. Press releases have the potential to reach huge audiences, and constituents of every stripe.  

smpr“We’re kind of stuck on making an old format meet a new purpose,” notes Jeff Domansky, CEO of Peak Communications and author of the popular public relations blog, The PR Coach.  “ The first social press release format came out 7 years ago, but we’re not using it. People are falling back on the old format, and complaining that it doesn’t work.” [Editor’s note – Shift Communications used PR Newswire’s multimedia press release (“MNR”) to issue their social media release template.  The MNR remains popular today.]

So what does work in crafting messages today?  Building storytelling into the mix.

“Write a good…

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Demographics of Social Media Users

Always fascinating to learn which social media platforms are the most popular, and the latest demographics info…a reblog from Jill Kurtz’s Communication in a Web Saturated World blog

Kurtz Digital Strategy

A comprehensive social media survey by the Pew Research Center conducted over several years to evaluate who uses social media and which platforms has been released.

Among adults, Facebook gets the most use. Percentage of adults preferring social networks are:

  • Facebook, 67%
  • LinkedIn, 20%
  • Twitter, 16%
  • Pinterest, 15%
  • Instagram, 13%
  • Tumblr, 6%

Women use social media 9% more than men do. The most pervasive and consistent divider among social media users remains their age. 83% of the young adult demographic (18-29 year olds) use social media, which is well over double the activity of online adults over 65 years old.

Social media users:

  • 62% of males
  • 71% of females
  • 72% of Hispanics
  • 68% of African-Americans
  • 65% of Whites
  • 83% of 18-29 year olds
  • 77% of 30-49 year olds
  • 52% of 50-64 year olds
  • 32% of 65+

Aside from division of age, there are still certain social media sites that attract…

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4 Reasons Brands Shouldn’t Rely Solely on Social Media to Communicate

Remember, direct mail and email still beat the pants off social media when it comes to ROI. As much as I love social media, I strongly suggest brands and nonprofits continue to use direct mail; print, broadcast, and online advertising; print collateral (don’t neglect your signage!); and email marketing, along with good, old-fashioned PR to keep front and center with your target audiences. And don’t forget to update those websites and YouTube channels! All these work together, folks…

Beyond PR

I wasn’t the only social media denizen who scratched their head and said “Really?” in response to the SEC’s ruling a few days ago that cleared the way for public companies to disclose material news via social networks. It turns out I was in good company, as many others looked in askance at the ruling too, including Fortune’s Dan Primack (“SEC’s new social media policy falls short.”)

Now, don’t get me wrong.  Fundamentally,  I support brands using social channels to communicate.  I am completely and utterly convinced of the efficacy and utility of social networks as a means to communicate with key audiences.

twitter tos textBut I also know from my experiences in managing several of PR Newswire’s social media presences for the last couple years that social networks are not perfect communications channels.  For a variety of reasons, I’ll never rely solely upon them as key communications channels.  Here’s why.

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A birthday interview with Mary Fletcher Jones

Mary Fletcher Jones

Happy Birthday to moi!

I probably won’t be profiled in Washington Business Journal anytime soon.  Doesn’t mean I can’t answer the questions.  You can do practically anything you want on your birthday…

What do you really want for your birthday?  I want to be told “Happy Birthday” 48 times.   I hope I get Lana del Rey’s Born to Die CD, the Paradise edition.

What was your first job?   I was a child actress.  I got my first paycheck when I was six years old.

What’s the biggest misconception you deal with in your work?  That Fletcher Prince is a large firm with a lot of employees.  So, I get a lot of sales calls for stuff I don’t need.

Best business decision?  Creating a short business name everyone can remember that doesn’t have too many characters to fit into social media profiles.

Your most interesting work project?  My video interview program, Conversations in Public Relations.

Client you want to have?   A ballet company.

How do you recover from failure?  I go out for ice cream.

Guilty pleasure?  Shopping at Claire’s for clip-on earrings because I don’t have pierced ears.

If you could trade places with a person for a day, who would it be?  The President.

Favorite hobbies?  Blogging and road trips.

Pet peeve? Men who don’t take their hats off indoors.  It should be a punishable offense.

What’s on your iPod? Keane, Al Green, Metric, Watson Twins, Bryan Ferry, Florence + the Machine,  Zero 7, Linda Ronstadt, Adele, and so many others.

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