My small, woman-owned public relations/marketing firm, Advice Unlimited, has been serving the Federal government marketplace for nearly 30 years to help companies with innovative technology get their solutions to the government. Every month, I’ll offer unlimited advice on how to work with this unique market. Please email me with questions or comments.

Advice Unlimited

Advice Unlimited

Friday, March 23, 2012

USO-Metro’s Annual Awards Dinner Reminds Us of the Importance of Giving Back

Last night, the USO of Metropolitan Washington (USO-Metro) hosted its 30th Annual Awards Dinner at the Ritz-Carlton in Pentagon City. We attended the dinner, providing PR support, as we have for the past 16 years, and were reminded why we got involved – and stay involved – with this phenomenal organization!

The evening was devoted to honoring outstanding individuals from each branch of service, as well as the exceptional people who support our nation’s service members through volunteerism and USO-Metro’s countless charitable programs, with a special emphasis on the military families served. Attended by senior government and military leaders, celebrities, business and community leaders, more than 500 guests joined with USO-Metro last night to honor our nation’s heroes and their families. This year also included a celebration of the Medal of Honor’s 150th Anniversary.

USO-Metro presented the John Gioia Patriot Award to Terri Santiago, the mother of retired Marine Sergeant Christopher Santiago, who was severely wounded in Iraq. Terri has been an amazing source of strength and inspiration, supporting her son and others as they heal. The program also included a Special Salute to our Nation’s Heroes, honoring active-duty service members from each branch of service. The honorees this year were Medal of Honor recipients – 18 Medal of Honor winners attended the dinner in celebration of the Medal of Honor’s 150th Anniversary. These service members were acknowledged for their courage and selfless service to our nation.

The entire night was a touching tribute to our service members and their families, and we were honored to be a part of it. The night reminded us all how crucial it is to give back to the community we serve. During this time of transition, supporting our nation’s heroes is more important than ever. Advice Unlimited’s involvement with USO-Metro allows us to give back and pay tribute, and is a constant reminder of the sacrifices these heroes make for us each and every day.

Monday, March 19, 2012

Learn How to Use Social Media in a Disaster at GovSec 2012

I'll be hosting a session for government communicators on using social media in a disaster at GovSec 2012 at the Washington Convention Center in Washington, DC on April 4, from 10:30 – 11:30 am.

The session will provide hands-on guidance on how to integrate social media into your disaster recovery communications plan. We will review real-world scenarios, such as the 2011-2012 LA Arson Fires, where social media played a crucial role. I'll also discuss with participants how we, as government public servants, can use social media to help us meet our mission: educating the public, disseminating critical information in a rapid, readable and easily understood format that our audiences embrace, calming fears and dispelling rumors.

Attendees will learn how to evaluate different social media sites for broadness of reach, targeting of specific audiences, and message delivery speed. The session will also include information on how to prioritize and integrate social media goals to ensure the overall communications plan gets implemented in a timely and effective manner, with energies focused for maximum results, especially in the crucial first few days immediately following a disaster or emergency.

This is a must-attend event for those who want to learn best practices in using social media in a disaster, and figure out how to integrate these practices into your organization as appropriate. To learn more about the conference and register, please visit