Posted by: kristinabundy | April 27, 2010

Facebook’s New Platform

About a week ago Facebook launched its’ new platform about sharing. There are now a growing number of websites that allow you to “like” or “recommend” them to your Facebook friends. I’m not entirely sure what to think of this new application, and I know I haven’t personally tried to use it though I have been on sites like CNN and seen articles friends have recommended. I like that Facebook is growing in the applications it allows users to enjoy, even while on other sites, I just personally wish they would explain their changes in a simpler way. I don’t like the huge chunks of info they send each time something on the site changes just because I don’t usually have time to read that much of it. What do y’all think? If you want to read more about Facebook’s recent update click here.

Posted by: kristinabundy | April 27, 2010

10 Pieces Every Woman Should Own

Sorry guys, this one might not be fore y’all.  I found an article that lists the 10 essential items a woman should have in her closet. I decided that this constitutes a PR connection because I am in the process of job hunting and I think that anything that will help me or other students seeking employment look more proffesional is a huge plus. The 10 items all women should own are

  • Black Blazer
  • Leopard Print Scarf
  • Red Flats
  • Striped Shirt
  • Statement Necklace
  • Little Black Dress
  • Black Opaque Tights
  • Oversize Watch
  • Flare Jeans
  • Classic Trench Coat

Even though I haven’t had a real job yet when I conducted my internship in an office setting last year I can attest that all of these items were seen several times while I was there, and I think all of the items above can be incorporated into a young woman’s professional wardrobe, just not all at once.

Posted by: kristinabundy | April 27, 2010

Advice to PR Students-T.O.W. 16

Learning the ropes of blogging this semester was definitely a challenge for me since I haven’t ever blogged before. My top 10 list of how new students should approach blogging is as follows:

10. Don’t  be afraid of getting started. Its not as hard as it seems. Trust me I had never blogged before this class and it will take some time to figure everything out but you’ll get it.

9. Try to do a few blog comments each week so they don’t all build up-25 comments is a lot to have in a semester.

8. Play around with WordPress, its the only way to figure the website and blogging out if you have never blogged before.

7. Try to do chapter notes and RATs together/around the same time. It’s easier to keep track of important ideas when you have just been quizzed on the main concepts of a chapter and the material is fresher in your mind.

6. Write about anything and everything. Draw inspiration from everywhere-the news, current events, other class discussions/readings etc.

5. Read other blogs that are written by people not in your class. You will get new insight from new people and you will learn about stuff you might not otherwise know about. Plus, it will give you some diversity in what you are reading.

4. Don’t procrastinate. There are a lot of assignments to do, and if you wait until a week before your blog is to be graded to start putting in real work. Blog checkpoints are there for a reason so keep up with everything.

3. When you do procrastinate don’t panic. Take a deep breath and re-evaluate.

2. Ask questions. Ignorance is rarely bliss when graded assignments are involved.

1. Go into blogging with an open mind. It’s not as overwhelming as it seems at the beginning of the semester, and its not as bad as you might think.

Posted by: kristinabundy | April 27, 2010

Death at 25

This is one of those PR conections that works for this class but is also kinda morbid. I found the story of Eva Makvoort and the blog65 Red Roses she keeps to fill in family, friends and the world about the end of her life after a long battle with cystic fibrosis. I think what Eva is doing is fantastic because she’s helping other people with terminal diseases as well as herself face the truth. She is also taking away some of the stigma of death for others. By being so open about her own experience with death she has also helped others accept death. If you want to read more about this blog you can find it here.

Posted by: kristinabundy | April 27, 2010

Social Media News Release-T.O.W. 15

According to our book Public Relations Writing and Media Techniques it is news release embedded with high-resolution photos/graphics, audio and video components. These are usually used for major events and product launches that require more types of information than traditional news releases. SMNRs( also referred to as a “smart media release”) were pioneered by electronic distribution services such as PR Newswire so that the typical news release could be updated. The distribution services  also connected with search engines like Google and MSN to reach a larger number of people who might see it.

There are obvious advantages and disadvantages to SMNRs, but I think the advantages outweigh the disadvantages. The SMNR has allowed news releases to get beyond the traditional audience of the gatekeepers and journalists and reach a broader audience. Instead of the gatekeepers being able to interpret news releases in their own way the selected audience can make their own interpretations.  SMNRs have also allowed for greater exposure because they show up on search engines. The only disadvantage I can think of with SMNRs is that people without computers or who are not tech savvy.

Social  media’s influence can be seen in SMNRs by using social media tags to sites like Digg , or other social bookmarking sites to circulate content and increase search engine rankings. These sites also help targeted traffic get directed to the organization’s website. Another benefit of SMNRs is that the information can be easier to read than traditional news releases. Instead of dense text SMNRs are usually formatted  with bullets, quotes and easy to scan text.

A PR professional should use a SMNR when they need to quickly disseminate information to a large number of people, and when that information needs to be formatted with multiple types of media.

PRX Builder or PitchEngineare both sites that can help you create your very own SMNR

And if you would like to see an example before creating your own SMNR, Business Wire has lots of examples but I liked this one by Puma.

Posted by: kristinabundy | April 27, 2010

Five Steps to Multimedia Storytelling-T.O.W. 14

I really like the News U course Five Steps to Multimedia Storytelling because it showed the best ways to tell a story which are: choosing a story, making a storyboard, reporting with multimedia, editing the web and producing the story. I learned that the best multimedia stories are multidimensional and non linear which makes them more interesting.

The first step to creating a multimedia story it collecting preliminary information. By getting as much information about your story as you can before entering the field you can make a storyboard to help figure out how you want to report your story. To make a good storyboard you  must define the elements, identify the media and conceptualize the storyboard. Creating a storyboard allows PR professionals to

  • define the parameters of a story with available resources
  • organize and focus a story
  • decide which medium to use for each part of the story
  • identify any holes in the story
  • list the resources necessary to finish the story

I also found the list of things needed in the field to report with multimedia. Some of the items needed include  your laptop, a tripod, manuals, extra batteries, lenses and filters, video cameras, microphones and cables to list a few. The advice for editing for the web was also very helpful because it had different categories for each medium which was more tailored than a general editing list. One of my favorite pieces of advice was to use a photo in place of 1000 words instead of as  accessories to words.

The multimedia story is shaped by the creator in the same way a print reporter shapes his/her story. Personally I think that by creating a multimedia story you are afforded more opportunities to tell an interesting story because you can include so many more mediums. I would recommend this course on News U to anyone needing to create a multimedia story.

Posted by: kristinabundy | April 26, 2010

Ten ways a PR person can drive a journalist crazy-T.O.W. 13

While there are lots of lists about how to create a great news release/pitch letter etc. there are often some things PR professionals can forget. So here’s a list of 1o ways a PR person can drive a journalist crazy.

10. Find out which journalist you need to send your material too, and don’t blanket an organization with the same news release. Its a surefire way to get your e-mails and calls ignored.

9. Find out the preference of contact for the reporter. Constantly faxing a story to someone who primarily uses e-mail is a good way to ensure your story is ignored.

8. Good relationships with journalists can be hard to gain and easily lost. If have the trust of a journalist don’t abuse it. Journalists talk with each other as much as any other profession, so you could hurt multiple relationships in the process.

7. Unless you have breaking news, don’t call during a deadline. Bothering journalists with unimportant information constantly will decrease the chances they’ll pay attention to the important stories from you.

6. Don’t call to find out when the story will run. Chances are the journalist doesn’t know when, if ever a story will run.

5. Don’t send clips of your client unrequested to the journalist. If it docent pertain to the release you have sent them they do not want it.

4. Make sure what you’re contacting the journalist about is news or a new trend. Sometimes less is more.

3. Don’t lie. Tell your clients/employer not to lie either. You, your client/employer or both will get caught eventually, especially with the tech footprints that are forever somewhere in the internet.

2. Do not include attachments unless the reporter has specifically requested you to do so. There are so many potential viruses today most journalists won’t open an attachment unless they know the sender.

1. Do not over represent your knowledge on what you’ve sent to the journalist. Over-hyping yourself will leave a  lasting bad impression.

All of these can be found by reading Public Relations Writing and Media Techniques.

Posted by: kristinabundy | April 26, 2010

PR/Marketing Podcasts-T.O.W. 12

The  podcast I listened to was an interview of Christie Maliyackel who works at a health care consulting firm and is writing a novel in her spare time. The interview was interesting because it showed how Maliyackel juggled being a graduate student and working and writing a novel. I also liked this podcast because Maliyackel was an accounting major in undergrad and got her Masters in health care.

Maliyackel also revealed that it took her several years to finish her novel, especially with such a hectic schedule. The Creative Career even has an exert from her novel which she says is based on stories from her first few years at her job. I read some of the exert and found it witty and similar to different interview situations. I think I might even try to find Maliyackel’s book Lucyland the next time I’m at a bookstore. Maliyackel seems to be a good example of how to balance work and advanced schooling in a successful way, and the fact that she found the time to also write a novel is something I find personally amazing. I don’t have enough time to remember to eat dinner some days, let alone write a fab novel liker her.

Maliyackel also had some great advice for upcoming graduating students. She said people should go into their first job with open minds and considering that the job they start with most likely won’t be their long-term career. Maliyackel also recommended that first time job holders enjoy those they are working with so they enjoy going to work. Graduates need to know themselves and be comfortable in whichever career they find themselves in. Her biggest piece of advice it to relax and not freak out, which I thought was great. Considering I’m graduating in 2 weeks I have definitely had to take a deep breath or two these past few weeks, but I appreciated her advice.

Posted by: kristinabundy | April 26, 2010

Meatless Monday

As some of you many be aware, today is Meatless Monday. I was reminded of it today by this article.  Its a day that has gained more and more support through various networking and PR campaigns, and is credited with additional popularity because of the “Oprah Effect”. The idea behind Meatless Monday is to have one day a week set aside to not consume meat. Supporters tout the many benefits of abstaining from meat once a week citing less water use and a smaller carbon footprint as excellent reasons to participate in addition to helping participants consume less saturated fat. Personally I think this is a great idea for both the environmental and physical aspects. The U.S. is known as one of the fattest countries in the world, and one day consuming more fruits and vegetables would improve everyone’s diet. I love meat as much as the next person, but I think we could all afford to go one day a week not eating meat.

Posted by: kristinabundy | April 25, 2010

Infographics-T.O.W. 11

This week we  looked at infographics. What are infographics you might ask? Well according to our book Public Relations Writing and Media Techniques infographics are computer-generated artwork that attractively displays simple tables and charts. They are a visual representation of information, data or knowledge.  These have been used increasingly by media outlets because they liven stories, and PR professionals have taken note and incorporate them when creating news as well.

Infographics are used when complex information needs to be explained quickly and clearly. The first time they were used was in as USA Today with a bar graph showing why people get stressed out. It was simple, but perfect, and nothing like it had been shown before in a major publication. Today infographics are used for for everything from road signs to weather maps in newspapers. They can fulfill the need of having to explain a lengthy concept in only a sign, and somewhere like a busy highway where there isn’t time to read whole lot of information is the perfect example of an infographic in the read world.

I would advise for a client to use infographics to display any sort of information involving figures that can be visually displayed since they can simplify information and intrigue those reading the article about what the graphics represent. We’ve all heard the saying a picture’s worth a thousand words, and in the case of infographics nothing can be more true. And what’s more infographics can be created by Microsoft Office, Abode and InDesign  which most PR professionals and increasingly the public has access to. Of course large news sources like papers,magazines and television shows have their own graphics department, but even without a graphics department infographics can easily be created.

The following infographic was found at this blog and shows how to make/what the difference is between several popular coffee shop drinks.

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