Pitch, Tweet, or Engage on the Street Book Review

img_1561As we become more and more globally centric, I’ve been finding that I have been conducting business with people all over the world. If you had asked me 10 years ago, if I would be doing business with someone in China or in Turkey, I would have laughed at you. But today, this is a reality.

Kara Alaimo’s book, Pitch, Tweet, or Engage on the Street, is the perfect addition for any marketer, especially if you are embarking on an international campaign. In the book, she talks about the do’s and dont’s of media placements in various countries.

Alaimo is an expert in international communications, having worked for the United Nations and part of President Obama’s administration. She also teaches the subject at Hofstra University. (That’s where we met and I was immediately drawn to her knowledge and expertise in the subject.)

Pitch, Tweet or Engage on the Street is chock-full of vital information for any seasoned or beginner PR professional.

Every country has its own ways of conducting business.  Kara Alaimo, through extensive research and life experience, delves into each country and organizes the book in an easy to refer reference manual. As the author states, “Correctly understanding culture is the key to practicing international public relations.”

What I love about this book, is the author provides tons of resources. For example, there are more than a dozen journals to review prior to starting a public relations program in a particular country. She gives the example of when she worked at the United Nations and she asked colleagues in different countries if they could meet a deadline. They all told her they could and when the deadline came around, nothing came. Her boss told her that it is impolite to say “no.”

If you have a product or service and want to offer it in a different country, she suggests using a local public relations firm and provides a list of the top agencies around the world as well as regional public relations associations.

The basic premise of the book is, know the audience before starting any type of campaign.

In addition to various social media networks Alaimo discusses, she also talks about various regions around the world. Each section begins with: “If you practice public relations in X, you should know Y.” For example, if you practice PR in South Korea, don’t offer exclusives; or, if you practice PR in the UK, be prepared for skepticism and humor.

Kara Alaimo also discusses pitching the media and offers an assortment of media outlets in those areas.

Pitch, Tweet, or Engage on the Street is packed with vital information for every public relations person doing business outside of the US. It’s a great resource and should appear on every PR practitioner’s bookshelf. It is well-written and the author offers interesting case studies, as well as, profiles of key PR practitioners.

I would highly recommend for PR folks and also for all marketing directors.