WE’RE HIRING! JOIN ONE OF THE NATION’S FASTEST GROWING SOCIAL PR FIRMS

Huss Group is a rapidly growing boutique social + traditional PR and public affairs agency.  Headquartered in Pittsburgh’s tech capital, Bakery Square, our powerful reach extends coast to coast.

Huss Group employees are our brand ambassadors and exhibit the same high energy, do-whatever-it-takes approach of CEO Joanna Huss.  We are passionate about getting our clients noticed, embracing the power of story-telling to solve problems and build value for stakeholders.  To do this, we combine our deep relationships with local and national reporters and community stakeholders with swift creative digital strategy that includes the strategic use of social media.

Who you will work with:

Employees of Huss Group work with some of our nation’s most dynamic institutions, entrepreneurs and corporations: from those fighting the spread of the Zika Virus, to Napa Valley wine producers, urban and regional public school systems and even the founder of MADD – our jobs are never the same from day-to day. Our clients are inspired by what they do every day, and our employees exhibit that same energy and passion for the work we do on their behalf.

What we need:

Our ideal employee lives a well-balanced, meaningful life and is always examining and pursuing greatness at work and beyond.  We enable individuals to be their best selves by offering a flexible schedule and an attractive workplace setting.  Our office in Bakery Square is one floor below Google’s regional headquarters.  While we believe that rigid work environments crush creative and entrepreneurial spirits, our employees need to have the ability to apply sensible structure whether inside or outside of the office in order to exceed our clients’ expectations.  And since our clients operate in a 24/7 world, we do too. Our ability to respond swiftly to their needs at a moment’s notice sets us apart, as does our creative use of social media both before, during and after traditional work hours.

Our people are the recipe for our success.

Positions:

Chief Creative Strategist – Digital Operations

Chief Creative Strategist – Storytelling

Chief Creative Strategist – Digital Operations

1. Manage Huss Group (HG) social and owned-media.

  • Create and execute owned social and digital media strategy, building upon the reputable HG brand to promote the firm and its CEO in PR and trade publications, furthering HG’s position as an innovative thought leader in the new media landscape.

  • Write blogs and social media materials, including posts on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and LinkedIn, acting as the ghost writer for the CEO to connect with other thought leaders and influencers with the goal of identifying new business opportunities.

  • Identify and implement measurement tools to analyze effectiveness of marketing output, both short- and long-term.

  • Identify opportunities to connect HG and its CEO with impactful thought leadership opportunities including speaking engagements, memberships, trade shows, etc.

  • Lead weekly meetings with the CEO to report on owned-media efforts and recommend shifts in strategy based on data analysis.

2. Manage client social and digital media accounts.

  • Develop social media strategy that suits each client’s unique business needs. Identify the relevant social media outlets, establish a schedule of posts for each, and then create engaging and (where appropriate) witty social media content that connects with the clients’ targets and aligns with their business objectives.  Creative use of hashtags and other means of building engagement, including paid boosts of certain posts, are central to achieving success.

  • Manage clients’ social media accounts. Prepare reports for CEO and clients that summarize the impact of our social media strategy.

  • Interface with existing clients on a regular schedule to stay current on new products, services and media-worthy developments.  Train clients to reach out to HG when post-able news occurs between regularly scheduled posts.

  • Maximize impact and understand value of video production for social and visuals that lead to engagement for HG social and client social.  Coordinate video/visual strategies into social campaigns.

  • When necessary due to capacity constraints, engage Huss’s strategic freelancers to help develop, post and boost social/digital content.

  • Identify new potential social/digital media clients for HG.  Collaborate with the CEO to implement outreach.

Experience:

  • At least three-years of management experience in digital storytelling or related fields.

  • At least one-year experience in utilizing Facebook Ads manager and other paid digital platforms.

  • At least two-years of experience in videography/photography

  • Adobe Creative Suite experience preferred

  • Bachelor’s Degree preferred

*Competitive salary and benefits package

Chief Creative Strategist – Storytelling
  • Lead manager on public relations and public affairs client accounts. Coordinate strategy and cultivate relationship with client and their teams to ensure expectations are not only met, but exceeded.

  • Along with CEO, manage/cultivate relationships with local/regional print and TV media (newspapers, magazines, TV stations, cable).

  • Oversee traditional media research for out-of-region clients. Includes identifying targets and coordinating outreach.

  • Write/edit needed client communications including talking points, media advisories, press releases and stakeholder communications. Develop and execute meaningful dissemination strategies.

  • Assist team in writing/editing HG owned-media materials including blog posts when needed.

  • Assist with identifying opportunities for HG CEO to take part in meaningful thought leadership opportunities.

  • Assist CEO with proposal writing, ultimately taking over this role.

  • Assist digital strategist with storytelling to ensure consistency of message. May include reviewing social posts.

  • Assist with special projects developed by the CEO.

  • For crisis communications clients, assume second-in-command role when required, working closely with CEO to coordinate response. Note: This requires 24/7 availability and willingness to work overtime when necessary.

  • Monitor client-related and HG related media stories and identify stories that should connect with HG clients, leading to increased awareness opportunities.

  • New business development: Participate in new business pitches and cultivate relationships to benefit HG.

Experience:

  • At least five-years in account management role with agency

  • At least five-years experience in storytelling-related field including journalism, or public relations — role must have included interface with reporters.

  • Bachelor’s degree

For consideration, please send your resumé to jhuss@hussprgroup.com.

PR to Pique Investor Interest

Author: Charles Crane, Huss Group Senior Consultant

You don’t have to be a Wall Street wizard to understand that companies that make more money are worth more to their shareholders.  A company that earns a billion dollars is going to be more valuable than one that makes a million dollars, right?

Then how can a company like Amazon have achieved a market value of hundreds of billions of dollars before it ever earned a penny of profit?

By telling its story, perhaps more effectively than any other company in history. 

Amazon had a vision: to disrupt the way products are bought and sold through innovative use of technology.  And in Founder and CEO Jeff Bezos it had a visionary who was (and still is) extraordinarily effective in sharing Amazon’s story of innovation, disruption, and growth.

The lessons of building value through effective storytelling apply to businesses of all sizes, publicly traded or privately held.  If you run a successful business, you know that great advertising, marketing and public relations are the keys to finding new customers–your company’s most important stakeholders–and to building loyalty among those who already love your firm’s products and services.

Those same elements, most notably PR, are just as important to maximizing what your business is worth. Value is in the eye of the beholder, and the more beholders your company has, the more valuable it becomes. 

Even if you are a sole proprietor who owns 100% of the business, you want to grow its value for future owners, whether you wish to sell it someday or pass it along to the next generation.  Telling your story to a broader audience through earned and owned media gets you and your company noticed by more potential owners, and as anyone who has ever attended an auction knows, the more bidders there are, the higher the price when the hammer goes down.

At Huss Group, we specialize in telling stories that make a difference.  We know how to identify your company’s unique competitive edge and then to broadcast your story to the audiences that matter most through traditional, digital and social media channels. We’d love to show you how an effective communications strategy can build value for your business.

Finally: United’s CEO Gets Public Relations Right

Author: Joanna Huss, Huss Group CEO + Founder

Carpool drop-off. Morning Cortado. Forbes Avenue traffic. It felt like a usual morning drive to the office. Eh, not quite. Listening to my usual local NPR station, where Trump policy talk takes the deafening shape of white noise (shout out to WESA, 90.5), there it was. The consummate nectar for every public relations professional: A long-form radio interview with an on-the-brink CEO. And even more fun, the CEO of maybe the 21st century’s largest PR disaster stories – United AirlinesOscar Munoz. But Munoz isn’t done yet. Embattled, but not broken after his tone-deaf #UnitedGate response, he did a kickass job with this radio interview hosted by David Brancaccio. A terrible nitpicker when it comes to food, drinks and, oh yes, media interviews – some call me The Judgmental One – I was surprisingly impressed.

It’s clear that a top-tier crisis communications firm intervened, and since you aren’t a popular writer these days  if you don’t present a “Top 5” or a “Top 10 Ways” list — here it is, spoon fed for you — the Top 4 Reasons Why United’s CEO Finally Gets Public Relations Right.

1. He Stayed On His Lifeboat.  

And squarely on it he did stay. You’ll get rocked and rattled by a reporter, especially when you’ve acted, well, not smaht.  Munoz didn’t take the bait. When the reporter tried to rattle him with pointed, hypothetical questions, he got right back onto his heartfelt “it’s about the people” apology. His lifeboat message points never failed him. He came off as passionate, sincere, and yes, media-trained.  

2. He Humanized Himself.

At one point Munoz talked about going against his gut in his initial response, saying – and I abbreviate – “backing the foot-in-butt policy was like putting my foot in my mouth.” But he acknowledged the error and used relatable language to communicate his fault, saying, “It just didn’t feel right in my gut.”  That shows he’s human. And now I must mention why companies need PR firms as constant partners. It’s too easy to go tone-deaf when you are surrounded by your employees whose world is working for the company under fire. Ever hear of group think? Outside counsel – PR counsel – is always needed. Especially in today’s 24/7 news cycle.

3. He Communicated Something Tangible.

The press sniffs out fluff better than a pig on a truffle hunt. Had Munoz done this interview before United’s new policies were announced, he wouldn’t have something to back up his apologetic response. He can tie his communications to the tangible changes his company is making to be, well, better. This tells us a sophisticated firm with a public affairs practice intervened.

4. He Engaged in a Conversation.

While following his carefully crafted messages, Munoz still came across as if he were having an honest conversation. He balanced the need to be scripted with the even more important need to not come off as phony. How could we tell? His intonation. His tone was melodic and his pace was natural; he left no time for awkward pauses.

Although Munoz did very well in the interview, there’s always room for improvement.  Radio offers no body language communication for its listeners to absorb, so you have to overcompensate for that. We tell our clients to turn up the energy level in their voice by at least three notches. The last thing you want is to come off sounding annoyed, low-energy, or disinterested. In the very beginning of the interview – literally at the “hello” – we would have liked to have heard more energy from Munoz. It’s a new day for United. Be positive about it while reflecting on mistakes. No one died. It wasn’t a plane crash. It’s not the end of the world.

And lastly – for goodness sake, boards of multimillion-dollar corporations – stand united (wah, wah) in making these CEOs act immediately in hiring a professional PR firm. It took Munoz more than two weeks to get it right. Stocks and consumer confidence took a dive while memes and late-night TV jokes about the airline skyrocketed. United’s biggest failure was letting its passenger policies get in the way of common sense. Every CEO and board chair should look at himself or herself in the mirror and ask:

“If my company is faced with a public relations crisis, will I ask for help?”