William Safire and the Art of Persuasion

New York Times columnist William Safire died on Sunday after a battle with pancreatic cancer. I knew of him but was not very well informed about his long career as a communications pro.

That might seem like an odd term for Safire, who is most recently remembered as a conservative columnist and defender of intelligent usage of the English language. But I learned a lot more about Safire in the few minutes it took to read one of the many articles published in recent days. He was, indeed, a pro who practiced the art of persuasion in a variety of settings throughout a long career, including journalism, advertising, public relations and politics.

Surprisingly, Safire was a college dropout (Syracuse University) who entered journalism and worked in all media, including TV in its early days. I didn’t realize Safire had a career in public relations, and was working in the field when Richard Nixon asked him to join Nixon’s 1960 campaign for president, which Nixon lost to John F. Kennedy.

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HubSpot’s Press Release Grader

Do you craft and distribute press releases for yourself or for your clients? As marketing budgets shrink due to the economic crisis, PR efforts will likely ramp up. Enter that old standby, the press release.

Of course, each press release faces heavy competition. In virtually every industry, there are thousands of press releases milling around the online and offline worlds. Getting noticed is a tall order.

HubSpot, an Internet marketing company, offers a free Press Release Grader that can help you craft a more effective press release. Here’s what they say about it:

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