We Love PR a Latte
June 2, 2016
You watch the barista behind the counter pour the beans into the chamber, flip the switch and then you hear the loud, grinding of coffee. While the beans are grinding, you see them pour your milk of choice into the steel container and watch as it loudly begins to steam. The barista sets it down, gives it a few goods pound on the counter to separate the foam, and by this time the beans have ground to the perfect texture. Using the tamp to compress the coffee and remove the excess air, your favorite barista places the portafilter on the espresso machine and pulls the shot. The result is perfectly dark brown and fades to a lighter shade at the top and takes a few moments to pour. You watch as the barista pours the shot and into your cup while simultaneously pouring the milk into the center of the cup. Once the cup is over halfway full, the barista moves it back and forth and a design forms on top of the foam.
Seem familiar? It’s likely what you watch take place every morning at your friendly local coffee shop. If you’re wondering why you just read a descriptor on how to make a latte on a PR agency’s blog, you’ll be surprised to find out that coffee and PR have a lot in common – aside from fueling every PR pro around. (Or maybe I’ve just had too much coffee). Either way, read on for a few PR skills.
They always say practice makes perfect. You won’t master pouring perfect espresso shots or steaming milk to the perfect texture without a little practice. The same goes for PR. There is always room for improvement, whether it’s with writing, public speaking, client communications or media relations.
Whether you’re communicating with clients and teammates or waiting for that piece of coverage to hit months after the briefing, you will realize that patience is a virtue, especially when it comes to PR. Patience and practice go hand-in-hand, whether you’re practicing latte art or PR skills, you’ll need patience to get you to your goal.
Timing is everything. Just like it is important to have the right timing while pouring espresso and steaming milk, it is crucial to strategize the best possible day for your client’s announcement. As soon as there are some tentative dates or a timeframe in mind, it is time to do your homework. Look up everything that is going on in your area and make sure that there are no major conferences, announcements from industry behemoths, or holidays that conflict with your client’s news.
The reality is, unless you’re good at multitasking, the barista life is not for you – and the same goes for PR. You have to be quick on your feet and able to juggle multiple tasks of differing priority levels at one time without dropping the ball.