Thank You to Maureen Kedes, Radio Host of PR Insider, For Interviewing Valerie Jennings, CEO & Founder of Jennings Social Media

Posted By: Kerry Phouthavong

Thank you to Maureen Kedes for interviewing Valerie Jennings Friday on PR Insider. During the interview, Valerie discussed how she started Jennings Social Media & MarTech by transforming it to a more non-traditional way of approaching PR. Although she still incorporates the standard components that make up for a typical public relations company, Valerie embraces her work more through social media and the art of online storytelling. Here’s a brief transcription of the interview.

Maureen: Today I have an expert on the show in social media storytelling. Her name is Valerie Jennings, Founder and CEO of Jennings Social Media & MarTech.

Maureen: Tell us how you started before the birth of social media?

Valerie: My background is as a journalist. I was a print reporter and I did some on-camera work. I worked on the government side; I did some public affairs, media outreach. I got more training on the traditional side. Even though I’m not a senior entrepreneur, I started my business at the age of 24. I did give us a huge boost from competitor’s standpoint. When I first started the business, it was traditional PR–pitching, press releases, media coaching, prepping for interviews, and looking at what’s going to sell.

Valerie: We experimented with a PR Web and we used a a lot of search engine optimization to capture the story; what was interesting and what was going to drive traffic.

We’ve continued to expand what we do, and we still do a lot of traditional. But we’ve maintained the social networking side as a way to penetrate some of the traditional aspect. For example, we have a great blog post; we’re a great video to produce for a client. We’re going to maximize that on the client’s Twitter site on a social media press release on Facebook, whatever it is. So we talk about success in an exclusive client list, and we’re really looking for companies that have amazing stories. We try to figure out what is a possibility and we figure out what is trending. As a journalist, if people aren’t looking for it, why would they be paying attention?