Public Relations Workshop with Gregor Landwehr

As the first companies got funded and MVPs/Prototypes created the knowledge about how to do PR and how to write an initial press release became more important.

To provide mentoring regarding PR to the Black Forest Accelerator participants, we invited Gregor Landwehr

Gregor C. Landwehr, born in 1983, studied rhetoric, art history, politics and philosophy in Tübingen. During his studies he completed a journalism editorial training. Since 2005 he works as a freelance journalist. Attending, the State Gazette in Stuttgart, the news agency DDP in Berlin and Potsdam, the NDR in Osnabrück and in the ZDF Berlin studio. He is a co-founder and shareholder of the new Academy for Journalism and publisher of Debatare, a print and online magazine for political debate, which was in 2013 awarded the European Newspaper Award. He currently lives in in Cologne and works for the WDR.

Gregor held a 1.5-Day-Workshop and shared with us his valuable knowledge and expertise about Public Relation activities. On Saturday evening the workshop started with a session with the title “Wie Worte wirken: Gehirngerecht schreiben”, which covered the effects of vocabulary. The next morning started with a talk about how journalists work and how to most successfully can be addressed. After that the Startups were asked to write an initial press release and had the chance to receive direct feedback from Gregor while doing so. The workshop closed with a plenary talk, in which everyone read his or her press release out loudly to discuss it within the group.

In the following you can read an interview with Gregor. Questions were sent by e-mail.

BFA: – Hello Gregor. Could you tell us about famous examples of an unexpected word and its emotional effects in communication?

G. L: – (I don‘t have an idea of such unexpected words…) Scientific studies show, that words have different emotional effects. There are positive, negative and neutral words. For example the word “Love” is positive, “Document” neutral and “Coffin” negative. Advertising often is exerted to use words with a positive emotional effect.

BFA: – What is the clue to find the appropriate metaphor for each theme?

G.L: -There is no clue, but you can learn and train to find metaphors. I suggest having a closer look into the bible. There you can find a lot of good examples, because metaphors are a short form of a parable. A Parable is a comparison, but a metaphor stands for the topic. Aristotle said: finding metaphors is an ability. I think it is more or less the skill to recognize affinity. And that’s what you can learn.

BFA: – “Excuse me, I can’t stand up” What is your opinion about this message? Do you know where does it come from? What has sense of humor to do for communication?

G.L: -You can only understand this message when you know the context. The American entertainer Groucho Marx said in an interview, he wants “Excuse me, I can’t stand up” to be written on his gravestone. So when you don’t know the context it is just a very normal phrase, when you know the context it turns outto be funny. Sense of humor helps us to addressemotions.And emotions are very effective, particularly when they are combined with arguments.

BFA: – Yes, thank you very much, Gregor. Very interesting informations.

Visit Gregor´s website: