Category Archives: Laura Murray Public Relations

Q&A: Jesse Tanaka

Digital Coordinator Jesse Tanaka is LMPR’s newest member of the team. With a background in independent music and a special skill set in online marketing, Jesse looks forward to combining his passions and working with LMPR’s broad range of clients.    Tell us about yourself & how you got into arts marketing.   I grew up around both visual and performing arts, my father was a potter and had his studio set-up in our basement so I’ve been working with clay since I was a toddler. My sisters and I would help out around the studio and at craft sales, but it seemed like a really hard way to make a living, so I was never really interested in the arts as a career initially.   After spending a few years in construction out of high school, I wanted something completely different with a different mix of people and ended up on the other end of the spectrum studying arts management at Capilano College. I was still a little unclear about what to specialize in and one of my big sisters mentioned all the weird ideas I constantly have running through my brain would be good for marketing, so I guess that’s where it began. Where is the best place you have travelled & why?   I’ve never really had the chance to do much travelling, all of my money has kind of gotten funnelled into education. I think I’ll probably be the first and last person ever to say Edmonton, but our family holidays growing up were always heading out on road trips to their folk fest.   We’d load up our Suburban with my sisters and I tightly packed in beside a load of my dad’s pottery to sell on the way. At the time, I took all of the musicians I got to see for granted, but looking back I’m glad I got to travel there, instead of Disneyland like the other kids. It was definitely a big part of my upbringing.   What was the first show you remember seeing as a child?   I was taken to concerts and music festivals starting at a really young age, but I think the first I actually remember was Jian Ghomeshi’s band Moxy Früvous at the Salmar Theatre in Salmon Arm. They toured through Salmon Arm a few times in the mid 90s and their tape was probably my favourite as a kid. I never have gotten to meet Jian, though maybe one day.   If you could grab a coffee with one artist – living or dead – who would it be and why?    I’ve never really gotten a thrill out of meeting famous people, but I’d probably go with Neil Young. We could talk music, hockey and I find all of the environmental causes he’s been fighting for lately really interesting. He could probably use some marketing for his new music player, so there’s that as well.    What are you most looking forward to in your new role at LMPR?   I’m excited to work with LMPR’s great roster of clients and get more experience working with such a diverse range of artists. I think many arts organizations are underutilizing many online tools, so introducing the possibilities should be a lot of fun.   Lighting Round!   Morning person or night owl? Night owl   Drink of choice? Phillips Blue Buck   Truth or dare? Dare   Favourite book? James and the Giant Peach by Roald Dahl (really high level, I know)   Best Movie? Fargo   Power of Flight or Invisibility? Flight for sure  

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Job Posting: Communications Manager

LMPR is looking to add a highly-skilled, big-thinking, arts-loving Communications Manager to our team! If you have a passion for publicity, client relations, and the arts, please check out our posting below:                                                                                                                                       Company   Laura Murray Public Relations (LMPR) is a group of highly skilled, forward-thinking professionals with a passion for marketing the arts and creative industries. The company was founded in 2011 to provide artistic, cultural, and creative organizations with a single contact and unified approach to marketing and communications.   Our full range of services include public + media relations, marketing + advertising, promotions, social media + online marketing, graphic + web design, copywriting + grant writing, arts consulting, and audience development.   Based out of Vancouver, LMPR delivers a variety of innovative marketing and communications solutions for clients including The Royal Winnipeg Ballet, The Chan Centre for the Performing Arts, Blackbird Theatre, Bard on the Beach, Theatre Under the Stars, Vancouver Opera, The Museum of Anthropology, and Vancouver Bach Choir, among others.                                                                                                   Position   LMPR is looking for a passionate and skilled Communications Manager to join our growing team of specialists. Reporting to the company Principal, the Communications Manager will work with, and manage the accounts of, a wide variety of arts organizations across the country, fostering a strong relationship built on trust with the client and internal teams. Providing a consistently high level of client relations, the Communications Manager will work to raise client profiles, increase ticket sales, and achieve organizational goals by providing efficient, strategic communications services, with an emphasis on public and media relations.   This is a full time salaried position. Occasional evening and weekend hours required.                                                                                     Responsibilities   Oversee all stages of project planning and execution to ensure highest level of quality is always met Motivate and inspire teams to generate imaginative, innovative work, and solutions Identify strategic innovation opportunities for the client and LMPR Develop and implement high-level media relations strategies for LMPR clientele Oversee multiple media relations campaigns, including staff management and client reporting Identify various story leads within each campaign and craft accompanying pitches for individual journalists Write communications copy, including press releases, show descriptions, and correspondence Secure interviews, reviews, and coverage for clients across a wide variety of outlets Direct all aspects related to keeping the client/LMPR relationship optimal Build strong relationships with clients and provide strategic guidance and direction Establish innovative cross-promotions and partnerships with local businesses and arts organizations to connect clients with audiences in unique, unexpected ways Utilize a variety of social media and online tools to amplify the reach of client coverage Oversee and direct workflow and progress of assigned team Provide leadership support to LMPR team members Maintain a close working relationship with the LMPR Management team                                                                                      Qualifications   Bachelor’s degree in communications, marketing, journalism, or a related field of study Three to five years’ experience in communications, media relations, marketing, or related field Strong writing and editing skills Excellent organizational skills and/or project management experience Excellent verbal and written communication skills Familiarity and comfort with software and online tools, including but not limited to Facebook, Twitter, Hootsuite, YouTube, and Photoshop Ability to multi-task and meet tight deadlines in a fast-paced environment Strong team player Passion and experience with the performing arts is highly valued                                                                                                  To Apply   Please send resume and cover letter to: jobs@lauramurraypr.com no later than April 11, 2014. All applications will be kept in confidence.   No telephone calls or faxed applications, please. We thank all who express interest in this position; however, only those selected for an interview will be contacted.  

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Job Posting: Online Coordinator

LMPR is looking to add a highly-skilled, big-thinking, arts-loving Online Coordinator to our team! If you have a passion for digital marketing, social media, and the arts, please check out our posting below:                                                                                                 Company    Laura Murray Public Relations (LMPR) is a group of highly skilled, forward-thinking professionals with a passion for marketing the arts and creative industries. The company was founded in 2011 to provide artistic, cultural, and creative organizations with a single contact and unified approach to marketing and communications.   Our full range of services include public + media relations, marketing + advertising, promotions, social media + online marketing, graphic + web design, copywriting + grant writing, arts consulting, and audience development.   Based out of Vancouver, LMPR delivers a variety of innovative marketing and communications solutions for clients including The Royal Winnipeg Ballet, The Chan Centre for the Performing Arts, Blackbird Theatre, Bard on the Beach, PuSh Festival, Dances for a Small Stage, Vancouver Opera, The Museum of Anthropology, and Vancouver Bach Choir, among others.                                                                                                   Position   LMPR is looking for a passionate and experienced Online Coordinator to join our growing Digital Division. Reporting to the Director, Marketing + Online, the position will work with a wide variety of arts organizations across the country, utilizing new media and online tools to raise profiles, increase ticket sales, and achieve organizational goals. Areas of work include display + search advertising, email distribution, social media, blogging, and other duties as assigned.   Full Time, Salaried position: Monday to Friday; 9am to 5pm. Occasional evening and weekend hours required.                                                                                     Responsibilities   Understand project and client online objectives Implement online marketing strategies for LMPR clientele Develop and execute online advertising campaigns using display, search, and social platforms Complete regular online activity reports, detailing performance of advertising campaigns, social media accounts, and website traffic Design and distribute promotional emails, e-newsletters, and announcements on behalf of LMPR clientele Track and report on e-mail response rates and e-mail list trends. Analyze results and identify areas for improved performance Analyze online trends and opportunities, providing recommendations on integration into LMPR’s overall marketing strategies Coordinate and execute website updates and modification requests Work with external suppliers on website and content management system maintenance and upgrades Create and distribute content via company + client social media channels Utilize online databases and event listing engines to raise awareness for upcoming client productions Administer domain names and web hosting services Provide marketing and communications support to LMPR team members, as assigned                                                                                      Qualifications   Curious, Inquisitive, Creative Ability to take projects from concept through to final production Bachelor’s degree or diploma in a related field of study Advanced proficiency with software and online tools, including Facebook, Twitter, Hootsuite, YouTube, WordPress, AdWords and Creative Suite Expert with Excel Passionate about online marketing, analyzing and interpreting results – especially excited about “the reason why” of results Expert with Google and YouTube Analytics Excellent organizational skills and/or project management experience Excellent verbal and written communication skills Motivated self-starter, pays attention to detail Ability to utilize existing, and to create new processes where necessary Ability to multi-task and meet tight deadlines Passion and experience with the performing arts is highly valued A Valid Driver’s license and access to a vehicle is an asset                                                                                                   To Apply   Please send resume and cover letter to: jobs@lauramurraypr.com no later than January 31, 2014. All applications will be kept in confidence.   No telephone calls or faxed applications, please. We thank all who express interest in this position; however, only those selected for an interview will be contacted.  

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Happy Holidays from LMPR

(Click image to enlarge)  

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Q&A: Sarah Cruickshank

Coordinator, Marketing + Online Sarah Cruickshank is LMPR’s newest member of the team. With a background in dance and PR, Sarah looks forward to combining her passions and working with LMPR’s broad range of clients.   1) Tell us about yourself!   I’m a B.C. native who grew up spending weekday nights and weekends in dance studios! Upon graduating from high school I wasn’t ready to stop dancing, and moved to Ontario for further training and education. It was out there where I first caught the contemporary dance bug!   Other hobbies and interests include anything outdoorsy–hiking, sailing, camping, surfing (occasionally!), and snowboarding.   2) How did you get into arts marketing?   I got to a point where I was feeling restless as a dancer, yet still felt a strong draw to the performing arts. I took a deep look inwards and realized I preferred to be behind the scenes supporting artistic friends in their own creative accomplishments, rather than on stage.   Still living in Toronto at the time, I reached out to several marketing professionals at arts organizations to learn about their experiences. From there I decided that this was the job for me and moved back to Vancouver to pursue formal PR and marketing education.   3) Which arts organizations inspire you?   As a dance student in Toronto I was always very moved by the dancers and dance pieces of Toronto Dance Theatre. Christopher House has an incredible vision that’s truly inspiring. I once had the opportunity to train under him for a semester and it was an experience I’ll never forget!   Additionally, I’ve always been inspired by Crystal Pite’s electric movement. I was 17 when I first saw her perform and have been following her career ever since.   4) What excites you about the arts in Vancouver?   The incredible pool of talent we have here. There are so many creative people living and working in Vancouver – musicians, dance artists, visual artists – the talent of these individuals has a truly positive impact on the texture of our cultural landscape.   5) What are you most looking forward to in your new role at LMPR?   I’m looking forward to getting more involved with and connected to the arts community in Vancouver. I’m also overjoyed to be learning more about marketing the arts from the incredibly talented team here at LMPR!    

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The Arts Appeal: A Measured Approach to Special Events

The Arts Appeal shines a spotlight on the craft of fundraising for the arts. Today, we tackle an old fundraising go-to that may be riskier than you think: The Special Event. Ah nostalgia! Remember the days of childhood bake sales and exhilarating cakewalks, raising funds for softball teams and fieldtrips? While those feel-good pursuits were great for team building, the financial success of those efforts really had more to do with parental charity (and donation of ingredients) than the meager purse of coins secured from hungry customers. A quick comparison of costs (including time and resources) against revenue would likely reveal a reality that’s not so different from today’s gala affair: Special events are financially risky. Any seasoned fundraiser will tell you that special events can and do lose money, especially when there are unanticipated upfront costs (a common characteristic for first-time events). In addition to upfront costs, events can be gluttonous resource-users, requiring significant staff and volunteer hours. If event budgets included the actual cost of staff time, the outlook for funds raised changes drastically. If you are starting to feel cautious about special events, you’re now in the best frame of mind to decide if it’s right for you. While they may be financially risky, special events offer unique opportunities to engage with your stakeholders and deepen relationships with current donors. Here are a few questions you can ask yourself before deciding if a special event is the best option for your organization: How much money do you want to raise, net of expenses? What other goals do you have? For example, do you wish to expand your list of friends and donors? Are you creating an event to raise your organization’s profile in the community? Will this be the first year of an annual event? Who is your target market and what type of event will they be attracted to? Remember that this event must be something that feels right to those closest to your organization, as you will be relying on them to attend and invite others to do so. What is a realistic price point for this market? How can you best reach that target market? Are they already in your database? Do you need volunteers to sell tickets? When will you hold your event? Is it seasonal? Do you have sufficient lead-time to plan it well? Are there any potentially conflicting events in your community at that time? What kinds of resources are currently available for the event? Is there a start-up budget? How much staff time can be budgeted? How many volunteers are currently available and how much time are they willing to put into the event? Do you have any connections to potential corporate sponsors for both financial and “in kind” support? Fundraising aside, by taking a measured approach – with realistic expectations and budgets – your special event can be a fun and effective way to market your organization and strengthen ties with your community. If you have a special event fundraiser that you’re proud of or are about to launch, we’d love to hear about it. Why not let us know in the comments or drop us a line on Facebook or Twitter?

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