Five Questions for Adrienne DeAngelo
By Jules Older
BATW’s newest corporate member is Adrienne DeAngelo. She’s senior accounts manager at af&co., a well-known lifestyle marketing and media-relations agency. Based in San Francisco, they specialize in restaurant and hospitality clients. Earlier this year af&co. merged with Ellipses, another communications agency with a similar focus. For BATW, I put five questions to her.
Adrienne, you’ve told us about the merger in your own article (in this month’s newsletter). My first question is, how does this affect travel journalists?
This merger just gives us a greater range of exciting restaurant and hotel destinations to share with our journalist contacts!
Got it. Question two. Speaking of travel journalists, what are the worst mistakes you see us making?
I see opportunities for better communication. From my perspective, I wish I knew more about what you want from us. As publicists, our job is to help you find your way to our clients. We sometimes reach out with a broad brush because we’re not always sure what stories you’re working on at any given moment or what you might be working on in the future. We want to deliver information in a way that’s useful to you right now, as well as memorable enough to use for future stories or pitch ideas.
If you do mention a client in your story — especially if it’s many months after an initial query or visit — I always appreciate an email with a link or PDF. Then I can ask my client to give you or your publication a shout-out on their website or social channels.
I also appreciate it when a writer is transparent about not being able to include my client in a story. There’s nothing more frustrating than an unanswered follow-up to a hosted visit.
Thank you for your frankness. Here’s question three. Of all the businesses upended by COVID-19, your clients are among the hardest hit. What comes next for them?
There are so many unknowns at this point, but I think it’s fair to say that people will be staying closer to home. Restaurants and hotels around the world will need travel writers to step fully into the role of adventurer and to tell deep, rich stories about people, places and destinations they may not feel comfortable visiting for months or even years to come.
Fourth, Adrienne, what’s with you and baking?
My dirty little secret is that I can’t follow a recipe to save my life. I’m more of an improvisational cook. That said, I love bakeries. My eyes get real big when I step inside of bakery, and I always leave with far too many treats.
Then, finally, your favorite Bay Area bakeries that aren’t your clients?
I don’t have a favorite bakery so much as I have favorite baked goods. The beautiful ham & egg croissant at Fournée, a chewy canelé from La Noisette, the flaky croissant at Patisserie Rotha; a hearty loaf of Adventure Bread from Josie Baker; the Everything bagel from Boichik; and Meyer Lemon Rosemary bread from Della Fattoria. The good news for me is that my teenage son is a fine baker, so I get to enjoy his creations, too.