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Jeff Hulett is a PR pro and freelance journalist.
This month’s PR Profile highlights a PR professional who works both as a public relations professional and as a freelance journalist. Based in Memphis, Tennessee, Jeff Hulett has over 12 years of experience in the public relations industry as well as time under his belt as a freelance journalist for High Ground News, Edible Memphis, and Memphis Parent.
Jeff’s career has spanned across many industries within PR. His start began as a Public Relations and Communications Manager for Church Health before he went on to start his own PR and Communications firm servicing non-profits and small businesses. In this blog, Jeff shares more about balancing work and family life, his love for music and PR, and how he proves the value of PR to his clients.
What made you get into the PR industry?
I started as an intern at Church Health, an amazing nonprofit that provides healthcare and wellness services to the uninsured in Memphis. I was a late bloomer coming off the road with my band Snowglobe. I did a lot of PR work for the band and with a degree in journalism achieved in 2002 I was looking for opportunities to break into the field. This was in 2008.
What does a day in your life look like?
First and foremost, I’m a dad. My day typically starts with breakfast and getting the kids off to school. Days vary depending on meetings and whatnot. I like to read the news first thing and see how I can find opportunities for my clients to weigh in on what’s going on in the world. I generally work with nonprofits and small businesses that need help messaging their mission and work. Writing, editing and pitching make up most days as well.
What is your favorite part about working in PR?
I get to be the “fresh eyes” for organizations and in that I get to help shape their stories.
What is one of your most memorable career moments?
In my work at Church Health I was allowed the freedom to combine my love for music and PR into Rock for Love, an annual benefit concert series that raised nearly $250,000 in ten years. Music was the lens we were able to tell the stories of the uninsured artists, musicians, makers and hospitality workers on the front lines of our city. It was a fabulous time.
What types of companies do you work with?
Nonprofits and small businesses, some restaurants.
How do you prove the value of PR to your clients or executives?
In several ways – results of course – earned media, support with content, etc., but also just making myself available and doing my best to make my clients feel like I am a part of the larger team. I also try to collaborate and elevate voices within the orgs I serve.
What are your must-have tools for your day-to-day tasks?
Coffee. Music. Cellphone.
What are some of the trends you saw take shape this year?
In light of our daily paper the Commercial Appeal being merged with USA Today, I saw several more outlets emerge. I have also seen an emphasis on profiles of people in all kinds of different industries. Journalism is becoming more personal in many ways.
How do you see PR and marketing changing in the next 10 years?
Tough question to answer now in light of COVID 19, but it’ll definitely change. More online and video content with an emphasis on results and statistics.
If you could give one piece of advice to a new PR professional, what would it be?
Be yourself and listen.
Looking for more PR-related content? Check out these tips on pitching from 4 PR pros, like Jeff, to learn what kinds of pitches you should be crafting in order to reach tech journalists and find success! If you’re a new PR pro, learn from industry veterans and those starting their career about 3 Things to Know before you get started.