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James Gaines

Strategy

James R. Gaines, former corporate editor of Time Inc. and managing editor of TIME, People, and Life magazines, came to RLM seeking to expand his brand and reputation as a media industry expert. With more than 30 years of experience and expertise, Gaines sought to offer a vision on how the media industry could evolve and thrive. Gaines also wanted to take advantage of new career and entrepreneurial opportunities created by the emergence of digital media and digital publishing. In order to succeed, RLM’s primary challenge was to ensure that Gaines’ voice of reason could be heard above all others.

Media Landscape

When Gaines came to RLM, cataclysmic changes were taking place that altered the media landscape forever. Centuries-old newspapers and magazines were closing and downsizing. The Internet’s ability to rapidly distribute information and the “Great Recession” of 2009 had collapsed many business models.

Recognizing this, Gaines, editor-in-chief of FLYPmedia, the premiere online multidimensional media “experience,” felt that legacy media outlets should embrace their collective imaginations to take advantage of the options presented by the Internet and stop merely reproducing print online. He knew that consumers valued good storytelling, and that outlets could use online tools to help them tell more compelling and engaging stories in formats that users crave.

Tactics

Following intense media training sessions, RLM set up desk-side briefings with reporters at The New York Times, Wall Street Journal, BusinessWeek, and Crain’s. This established Gaines as a thought leader and source for reporters chronicling dynamic shifts within the media industry. Simultaneously, RLM crafted Gaines’ online presence by refining his site and establishing his blog, “Crashing into Media,” often writing, and always editing, every post. RLM further enhanced Gaines’ online presence by providing him with multiple tweets each day of industry-related topics and stories and placing him on industry-wide Twitter lists, including MediaBistro’s influential “Multimedia Journalism” list.

RLM successfully transitioned Gaines’ blog to the highly-respected expert blogger network True/Slant, and negotiated a regular column for him on the future of the media industry with the Huffington Post. RLM secured placements and byline articles in Fast Company, Inc.com, FOLIO: (online and print), La Opinion, Mashable, MediaBistro.com, MediaShift, Mediaite.com, Poynter.com, PSFK.com, Smartplanet.com, The Atlantic, Troy Media, The New York Times (online and print) and Technical Tidbits on BlogTalkRadio. Gaines was also quoted in a Mashable piece that became a trending topic on Twitter within four hours of its publication, and was the fourth-most read piece on Mashable in 2009.

As part of its reputation-enhancement campaign, RLM sought speaking engagements for Gaines to further enhance his reputation. A diverse list of media, business and educational organizations were sought, which included the Nieman Foundation for Journalism at Harvard University, the Publicity Club of New York, the Entertainment Publicists Professional Society and 2010 the O’Reilly Media Tools of Change for Publishing Conference, among other opportunities. To support his career and business goals, RLM completed presentation training prior to meetings with business leaders and potentials investors and employers.