Saturday, June 14, 2008

Mike Bitton, On Assignment

I'm reading quite a few books about how to make my new PR business successful. Over and over again, I keep seeing this advice: Put yourself in front of the folks you want to hire you. Well, they're easy enough to identify! Bitton PR specializes in outdoor industry public relations, so I just need to get myself in front of the owners and upper-level managers of every company with products for sale in REI or Eastern Mountain Sports! I can catch most if not all of them twice a year in Salt Lake City, during the Outdoor Retailer Winter Market and Summer Market trade shows. But have you ever been to Outdoor Retailer? The bigwigs are so busy during Outdoor Retailer, even a charmer like me struggles to land an appointment.

So I have an innovative plan to get in front of the folks I want to hire me. I'll become the expert at covering the most gear-intensive outdoor sport ever created -- adventure racing. And I'll cover the sport for the best adventure racing news source in North America, a nifty little website called Checkpoint Zero. That bachelor's degree I earned in journalism, and the 10 years I spent working at daily newspapers, sure will come in handy! So instead of a handshake and a business card at Outdoor Retailer, I'm gonna do this: Show the owners and upper-level managers of every company with products for sale in REI or Eastern Mountain Sports, via a body of writing and photography work, that I know their customers better than anyone else. That my pulse is their customer's pulse. That if they're ready for a PR pro who's not afraid to spend a week in the dirt for the love of adventure, I am their PR pro.

Part One of my plan -- getting the assignments from Checkpoint Zero -- is already panning out. Paul "Yak" Angell, owner of Checkpoint Zero, LLC, confirmed this week I'll be covering at least four events for him during the remaining months of 2008: Primal Quest in Montana; the Mountain X Race in the French Alps; the Upstate Adventure Race in South Carolina; and the Abu Dhabi Adventure Challenge in the Middle East.

As the body of work grows, I know Part Two of my plan will come to fruition. There certainly are some solid outdoor industry PR agencies already doing business. But only one has my passion at the helm. Owners and upper-level managers of outdoor industry companies, here am I. If you have any PR request for proposals to send out for bids, don't forget Bitton PR in Portland, Ore. We'll give the established agencies a run for their money, guaranteed.

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