Category: Slider


Travis Burch proposes to his girlfriend, Avian Lain, after they completed a skydive at Skydive Suffolk, our PR client.



When we learned a young couple planned to become engaged after a skydive at our client, Skydive Suffolk, we jumped into action.

What a perfect opportunity for media coverage, we thought.

Turns out, we were right.

On Saturday, January 28, Travis Burch surprised his girlfriend, Avian Lain, with the proposal once they landed on the ground after respective tandem jumps (a jump while connected to a trained professional).

Spoiler alert: Travis had proposed while on the plane with a candy ring pop. The actual ring was waiting safely back on the ground.

When they landed, Travis walked over to Avian for the official proposal — no more ring pop needed!

Travis told us, “I wanted to do a skydiving proposal because I didn’t think anyone had ever done it before.”

Was Avian surprised? You bet! “I had no idea about what Travis was up to,” she said.

Within two hours of the jump (around 3 p.m.), RCG sent the media a short press release and video of the couple’s skydive and marriage proposal.

That night and two times on Sunday, the story appeared on WTKR NewsChannel 3. The TV station also posted the news online.

So much of PR is instinctual. We felt like a skydiving marriage proposal had potential for media coverage. So we trusted our gut.

But the coverage only happened because we acted quickly and gave the media everything it would need to report the story:

– Recap of the event

– Link to the video

– Quotes from the engaged couple

– Contact info

We made it easy to report on the event and, in turn, we landed the coverage.

How can we excite the media about your big news? Contact us to get started!





By Jessica Bensten and Jenn Hill

Social media is constantly evolving and providing new avenues to reach the masses — especially Facebook.

Have you noticed friends “going live” the last few months?

Facebook Live is one of the latest options on Facebook to create your own news by utilizing your smartphone or computer to broadcast directly onto your personal or company Facebook page.

Thinking of trying it out?

5 Do’s of Facebook Live

  1. Pick a good topic. When using Facebook Live for your business, choose a topic that’s applicable to your target audience or at least timely to current events.
  2. Utilize a host or narrator. If you’re shooting video of something, it’s important to actually talk at the same time. Your audience only knows what you show them, so if the video is confusing and there isn’t someone narrating, they’ll lose interest.
  3. Respond in real time. Take time to type to your commenters and answer their questions. Mention them by name!
  4. Test the WiFi strength before you start. Nothing says disaster like spotty WiFi.
  5. Use a selfie stick. If you’re taking a live video on the move, a selfie stick will give you a steady video and better angles. We all like to avoid the double chin shot.

5 Don’ts of Facebook Live

  1. Don’t go live when you’re not ready. Yikes! Not only is it unprofessional, but it could actually be disastrous. Alert the people around you that you’re going live. They’ll want to check their teeth, hair and language.
  2. Don’t…broadcast without an audience. To have an audience, you need to promote ahead of time.
  3. Don’t…live feed anything and everything you do. While you may think what you’re doing is important, not everything you do is live-worthy.
  4. Don’t…shoot video with inadequate lighting. It’s just polite.
  5. Don’t…be boring! Facebook recommends your Live feeds be at least 10 minutes long so you can build an audience.

Overwhelmed with social media and not know where to start? We’re be happy to help create a plan customized just for your business’ needs. Contact Jenn at 456-5212 or to schedule a meeting.

By Jessica Bensten

Beth Sholom Village is rooted in tradition.

Along the nursing home’s walls are large-scale black and white photographs honoring treasured past residents. Each day staff and visitors make their way past these smiling faces to assisted living, rehab or maybe the wellness center.

We know these walls well. (more…)

By Jenny Freebus

Senior, Ocean Lakes High School

With summer coming to an end, it’s time to wrap up the internship I was fortunate to land through Virginia Beach City Public Schools.

My time with Rubin Communications Group has been filled with memorable experiences and opportunities. Within the next week, I’ll be back at Ocean Lakes High School to start my senior year, and I know the skills I learned this summer will play a significant role in my work habits. Here’s a list of the top five skills I learned at RCG:

  1. Quick thinking is a must. Whether it’s brainstorming ideas at a staff meeting or searching for a quick fix in the field, thinking fast will serve you well. In the public relations world, everything tends to have a short turnaround time so there’s little time to waste.
  2. Maintaining a professional attitude is crucial when representing a business and talking to clients. It’s important to remain calm, cool and collected so as not to damage the reputation of the business you represent. A bad encounter now could jeopardize work in the future.
  3. Keep a positive mindset. When talking to current or potential clients, it’s essential to remain positive and practical because pleasing the client without setting their expectations to an unreasonable height is the biggest priority.
  4. The importance of research. Whether the task is to find background information on a potential client or local nonprofits in the area, doing research shows investment in your clients. It also helps you gain a better understanding of the work expected of you.
  5. Soft skills. The Hampton Roads community is large, but it’s also friendly. People are interested in how your day is going so having the skills to converse with clients and other professionals goes a long way. In the business community, it’s important to be personable because it opens the door for networking and forging new relationships with other business and community leaders.

Through the internship, I experienced the “real business world” for the first time and learned the difference between advertising and public relations. The PR world moves pretty fast, and the skills I gained will help me no matter what career I pursue.

I am grateful to everyone at Rubin Communications for their constant support and guidance.

The vast majority of our clients are good people who give back to the community.

But everyone, us included, can learn a lesson from Jim Lang, an environmental attorney with Pender & Coward in Virginia Beach.

Not only did Jim finally prevail on behalf of his own client, but he then rolled up his sleeves and convinced others to roll up theirs, to really fix the problem his advocacy solved. (more…)

At Rubin Communications Group, our clients come in all shapes and sizes. We work with corporations and non-profits across a wide array of industries and topic areas. That means, when we bring on a new client, we need to be a quick study in the work they do and the world in which they operate.


Not all the work we do or time we allot at Rubin Communications Group is compensated.

We adopt charities, serve on boards, offer free advice and make donations, often to events that are meaningful to our clients.

Give Local 757, an annual event coordinated by the three major community foundations in the region (Peninsula, Southeast and Hampton Roads) reach out to Joel Rubin. Not knowing exactly what he was getting into, he agreed to help with PR on a pro-bono basis, in exchange for our logo being placed on all promotion.   (more…)

We only “pitch” what we consider viable stories to the news media and never complain if we fail to achieve “hits.”

But in late April, we were on a roll, thanks to our clients and a host of reporters and editors who agreed that our advisories warranted coverage. And in some cases, the placements were beyond our wildest imaginations. (more…)

Joel and Sara Jo Rubin founded Rubin Communications Group 25 years ago out of the family playroom. Congrats on the anniversary!

Joel and Sara Jo Rubin have been married for 35 years and during most of it they have worked together running what is today Rubin Communications Group. All these years later, we’re still going strong!


My, where has the time gone?