Thursday, March 25, 2010

I've joined Bloomberg

Greetings - Thanks for your support of Pam Snook Public Relations over the past year.  I've decided to return to corporate life at Bloomberg in an exciting new job where I'll be leading PR for Bloomberg's products and services.  You can keep in touch with me at


Thursday, February 11, 2010

WSJ Digital Network – Social Media – Fascination or the Future?

Is social media right for your business? It’s a question many are asking, so I thought you might find it helpful to get some comments from the editorial staff at the Wall Street Journal’s Digital Network.

“Social media is exploding, it’s not just a passing fascination, it’s a way of life,” Jon Friedman, Media Web Columnist for MarketWatch, told the Publicity Club of New York. Friedman and several colleagues explained how to get press coverage in the Wall Street Journal’s new digital network.

“Everyone has a story to tell,” Friedman said, adding that having a digital format gives him more page views and the ability to try different things. He said he’s open to pitches about the media business, but wants public relations professionals to be creative and think like journalists. “Why should my readers care? Why is it important? What’s the meaning and the dollar value?” he asked, adding that he prefers pitches via email at

Twitter and email (not facebook) are good ways to reach me, said Peter McKay, a staff reporter for the Wall Street Journal, who covers Wall Street, stocks and commodities for, the print edition and the WSJ’s MarketBeat blog ( “I’m looking for traders and money managers who are running a significant amount of money,” McKay said, adding that he wonders if a tweet of a press release would fulfill regulatory requirements. He can be reached at

“Don’t lead with a press release. A news tip can turn into a story,” said Peter Kafka, a senior editor who covers media and technology for All things Digital ( The web site is owned by Dow Jones, but functions autonomously, providing news, analysis and opinion about digital developments. Kafka added that “Twitter serves as a good megaphone for digital writers and occasionally as a resource for stories.” He can be reached at

“Good PRs understand a good story, know how to find people quickly and are responsive,” said Simon Constable, afternoon host of "The News Hub,” a live, daily online news broadcast that airs weekdays at 8:30 a.m. and 4:00 p.m. ET on and “The guests should be entertaining,” added Constable, who writes about the economy, the Federal Reserve Board and the Treasury Department in ways that any can understand. The broadcast is also available on demand and the content is also carried on Dow Jones Newswires. He can be reached at

About 500 videos are produced a month, said Julie Iannuzzi, Video Editor for The WSJ Digital Network. She also oversees the News Hub along with's Shawn Bender. Iannuzzi said she looks for stories where the video will complement the hard copy of a WSJ story or be able to stand on its own. She works with editors to get them thinking about video at the start of a story. “Video can drive a story,” said Iannuzzi, who can be reached at

All Things Digital grew out of the WSJ’s All Things Digital conference and has become a combination of blogs and newspaper columns, providing news tips, facts, opinion and analysis in text and video.

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Contact Pam Snook Public Relations for more information and an assessment of whether digital/social media PR is right for your business – or 917-544-1923.

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

BoA’s Sallie Krawcheck – Where do we go from here?

Sallie Krawcheck is focused on the future. "There’s been a lot of blame on Wall Street, but we’ve learned our lessons and we need to move forward," said the head of Bank of America’s Global Wealth Management business.

Speaking recently to the Financial Women’s Association, Krawcheck challenged the financial industry to stimulate economic and investor growth with common sense, creative thinking and good advice.

"The stock market always holds risks, but we are not looking for a double dip," Krawcheck said, adding that flows into bond funds have been significant, so there’s room left in the equity markets. Investors, she said, would be well advised to look at opportunities around the world to get better returns.

"The real secret to investing is asset allocation," she said, adding, "it may not be the most fun to talk about at a cocktail party, but it works."

Lending is another issue. Krawcheck acknowledged that many small businesses have suffered "near death" experiences in the financial crisis and are looking for more credit and liquidity. Banks want to help small- and medium-sized businesses, but will lend when they know they’ll be getting their money back.

When will Wall Street regain investors’ trust? "It won’t be because of a marketing campaign," Krawcheck said, adding: "We have to work in the best interest of our clients every day and help them when they face situations where they could lose money. That’s when we’ll see a rebound." While many investors say they can’t trust Wall Street, Krawcheck said that Bank of America research shows that 85% of people are happy with their financial advisor.

And what does Krawcheck have to say on Wall Street compensation levels? "It’s clear that compensation in certain areas is out of whack. We should provide incentives for appropriate behavior and have a more long term focus of business," she said.

Women make up 50% of the workforce, so why don’t banks cater more to women, an audience member asked Krawcheck. "No one has hit the right mark yet," she said. "Women are not looking for a bank in pink. They want to be spoken to genuinely. Financial service firms need to educate male financial advisors that they are speaking to the whole family, not just the husband," she added.

Now is the time for women to step up, Krawcheck said, adding: "We’ve had a real crisis and it’s not good enough anymore to just be role models. We need to take on more responsibility and help each other along."

The bottom line, she said, is "there is no substitution for hard work." Krawcheck admitted that she doesn’t have a good work/life balance. "You don’t have to do it all, she said, adding that the support she gets from her husband and family has helped her succeed. Krawcheck said she never formally had a mentor, but learned lots of lessons from supervisors. "Feedback is a gift," she said, adding that everyone should look for feedback on an ongoing basis, not just once a year. And when corrective criticism is given, it should be received graciously. "People are willing to help and you’d be surprised what you can learn if you ask questions."

Following your gut instincts is crucial, she said. Krawcheck said that she didn’t bother to listen to people who said that she would never come back to Wall Street after leaving Citigroup. "I could have traveled the world, but that’s not my personality," she added. She did take a few afternoon naps with her cat and dreamt about next steps, but then she started "networking like a fiend." One day, the phone rang and it was Sanford Weill, the former head of Citigroup, who spoke to her about her current position at Bank of America.

"What doesn’t kill you does make you stronger," Krawcheck said. "So don’t give up, don’t give up, and don’t give up!"

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Pam Snook, 917-544-1923,,

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

CBS's Bob Schieffer -- No substitute for reporters

“There’s no substitute for a news reporter,” Bob Schieffer, CBS News Chief Washington Correspondent, told the New York Press Club during the first of its “Living Legends” speaker series.

Schieffer started his journalism career as a police reporter at the Fort Worth Star-Telegram and became the first reporter from a Texas newspaper to correspond from Vietnam. He joined CBS News in 1969, has covered the White House, the Pentagon, the State Department and Capitol Hill, anchored the CBS Saturday and Sunday Night News and now moderates Face The Nation, which airs on Sunday mornings.

“Sunday morning is different than any other time on TV,” Schieffer said. “Face the Nation is one of the oldest programs on TV, has changed the least and still has big audiences.” Schieffer says he still warns the show’s guests, “If you’re not prepared to answer questions, don’t come on. And not answering a question is an answer.”

But Washington, D.C. has changed significantly, Schieffer said. “When I started at CBS most members of Congress didn’t even have press secretaries. Now, all politicians are very sophisticated in how they manage information which sometimes makes it harder to get the truth.”

The latest Presidential Debates were fun, Schieffer said. “Obama is so composed, which is one of the reasons he won.”Being successful in the news business can be as simple as being there.

“When the phone rings, answer it,” Schieffer said, recalling the moment on November 22nd, 1963 when he answered the phone and on the other end of the line was the mother of Lee Harvey Oswald, the accused assassin of President John F. Kennedy.

The conversation resulted in exclusive information on the assassination. “I’ll never forget that day,” Schieffer said. The news business has changed dramatically due to the internet. “I’m worried about where information is coming from,” Schieffer said, adding that the media is driven to get stories out so quickly that accuracy is suffering.

“Some websites don’t always follow journalistic standards. There’s stuff getting circulated that’s just not true and it’s hard to pull that back.”The hard reality, he said, is that because there are now so many outlets, it is difficult to draw the large numbers of viewers individual broadcasts once attracted. Consequently, how to find the revenue for news coverage to continue is a good question, Schieffer said.

Schieffer’s perspectives on more than 40 years in the news business are related in his latest book, "Bob Schieffer’s America." The book includes 171 of Schieffer’s commentaries on subjects such as “How Washington Works – and Doesn’t,” the bombing of the Oklahoma City federal building and waiting for the Supreme Court to decide the outcome of the 2000 election.

For more information on Face the Nation go to

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Pam Snook Public Relations 917-544-1923,

WSJ's Alan Murray - Will newspapers survive?

The newspaper business may be stuck in a messy period for the next 10 years, said Alan Murray, deputy managing editor and executive editor of The Wall Street Journal. Murray oversees the Journal's web sites including and and the Journal's books, conferences and television operations.

"It's a curious time in the newspaper business. There was a time earlier this year when you could buy a share of McClatchy stock for less than you can buy a newspaper," Murray noted.

The newspaper business has changed dramatically from the "Leave it to Beaver" days of Ward Clever reading the paper in the morning before he went to work. "People have a million places to get information today," he said, adding that the number of print readers is significantly smaller than the number of online readers.

The Journal's web site, however, has more than 20 million visitors monthly triple the amount of three years ago.

"We have to get people used to paying for content," he said, adding that advertising alone is not going to be enough. The Journal does give some content away free, but has an audience that pays for access. "We give out for free much of the popular news, but put behind the pay wall, the stuff that we uniquely provide," Murray said, adding that the paper is looking at other ways to generate revenue such as premium services. "We will find a way to get through this, but not everybody will."

Despite the financial challenges, Murray said, "I've never had more fun in journalism than I'm having now. We're talking to readers in more ways than ever and we have a richness and depth, we never had before."

The paper is looking to grow its audience and is offering more features. Being a photographer for the paper used to be a joke, but the paper has become more graphically and technologically savvy and now offers web casts. "We're go way beyond what we've done in the past," Murray said.

Rupert Murdoch has a passion for the Wall Street Journal and will fund its growth, he said, adding that he sees no evidence of ideological influence on the news coverage. There have been changes such as less long form stories, he said, adding that the paper can no longer function like a magazine.

What Murray said worries him most about the news business is the trend for people to seek media that supports their biases. "People are in a news bubble and just consuming the media that agrees with them and reinforces their opinions," he commented to the Public Relations Society of New York.

Murray is also the author of three best-selling books: "Revolt in the Boardroom, The New Rules of Power in Corporate America," "The Wealth of Choices: How the New Economy Puts Power in Your Hands and Money in Your Pocket," and "Showdown at Gucci Gulch: Lawmakers, Lobbyists and the Unlikely Triumph of Tax Reform," co-authored with Jeffrey Birnbaum.

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Pam Snook, 917-544-1923,,

CNBC's David Faber on Wall Street Greed...

David Faber’s seen greed up close. A financial journalist for 23 years and a 16-year veteran of CNBC TV, Faber has interviewed the financial world’s famous and infamous and chronicles it in his book,“And Then the Roof Caved In: How Wall Street's Greed and Stupidity Brought Capitalism to Its Knees.”

What caused the crisis? Several factors, Faber said at a New York Press Club event, recalling that details of complex investments were never fully revealed by companies, which “sewed the seeds of demise.”Annual reports as late as 2006 failed to mention the details of collateralized debt obligations (CDOs) and mortgage backed securities. And he said he remembers talking to hedge fund managers and wondering if they had a full grasp of the true nature and risks pending before the avalanche in 2007.

Should media share the blame? “There’s a lot of criticism of the media now,” Faber said, “That we did not do enough, that we missed raising the red flag on the greatest credit bubble. Perhaps there was more we could have done to shed light, but the companies did not make it easy to understand what they were doing.”

Will Wall Street ever change? Good question, Faber said. We’re back from the brink of the financial crisis and things look like they are getting better, he said, but questioned whether the debacle will lead to lasting reforms. “I’m not optimistic that pay practices will change,” he said. “Lobbying arms are strong…memories are short…and it may take years to resolve. We need significant changes in regulation.”

Faber said what is different now is the way he looks at and covers news. When he started in financial journalism in 1987, he wrote on a typewriter and remembered feeling that the language of finance seemed to be designed to keep people out. At 23, he wrote for an Institutional Investor newsletter and felt that scoops were everything, especially if he could beat the Wall Street Journal. And when he started at CNBC he found it was harder to get people on TV.

He’s a better interviewer now, he said, learning from his mistakes like forgetting to ask Bernie Ebbers key questions during the WorldCom scandal. Today, Faber holds Emmy, Peabody, and DuPont awards, is the anchor and co-producer of CNBC's documentaries and a contributor to CNBC's Squawk on the Street. Faber also blogs at

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Pam Snook Public Relations, 917-544-1923,