PR Campaigns – The blog

April 12, 2009

More “good” presentations

Filed under: Prof. Gilpin — drgilpin @ 7:34 pm
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Here’s another potential source of inspiration for your final project pitches: the latest post at Presentation Zen shows some examples of visuals from Good Magazine. As Gar Reynolds points out, these are probably not great for full presentations, but they do combine high-impact images and text (such as a short phrase in white text on a black background, or a quick movie montage) that could greatly enhance a slide show and oral narration.

My favorite is the last one, but they all have some good ideas in them.


April 3, 2009

When text is a good thing in a presentation

Filed under: Prof. Gilpin — drgilpin @ 7:46 am
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(Since some have asked: yes, commenting on this post counts for your weekly quota.)

I’m always advocating for minimal text on slides, which really comes down to wanting everything on the slide to have maximum impact. Usually there is a tendency for people to simply fill screens with ugly bullet points and meaningless clip art, neither of which enhance a presentation. My view is that it’s usually best to use the screen for strong images and the occasional key phrase, like a title or important data point, leaving the bulk of the argument for the oral portion of the presentation.

Sometimes, though, the text is the art. Although I wouldn’t recommend using these typographical techniques for an entire campaign presentation, they can be effective for certain portions, or for any video messages that you might want to make for your client proposals.

A couple of my favorites from the above link:

Vodpod videos no longer available.

more about “Ana Ng Typographic video on Vimeo“, posted with vodpod

Vodpod videos no longer available.

more about “78RPM – MP3 | 70 Years of Revolutiona…“, posted with vodpod

Vodpod videos no longer available.

more about “DJ shadow – The Outsider (Typographic…“, posted with vodpod

In any case, it’s worth checking out. And as we near the end of the semester (and your team presentations), I strongly encourage you to visit Presentation Zen (where a recent post shows another fantastic text-based presentation) for tips and examples, and Ted for more inspiration.

November 7, 2008

For those short on posting ideas

Filed under: posting ideas,Prof. Gilpin — drgilpin @ 8:11 am

Remember that every week I post, and regularly update, a list of potential blog topics. This week’s “ideas” post is here. One of you is even mentioned in a linked blog.

Posts taken from my “suggestions pile” are worth a maximum of 8 points for your team, but the hit of 2 points may be worth it if you’re pressed for time and out of inspiration.

November 3, 2008

This week’s posting ideas

Filed under: posting ideas,Prof. Gilpin — drgilpin @ 9:57 pm
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I will be coming back to this post as I come across more suggestions, so check back here if you’re looking for ideas.

I would love for someone to post about the Pepsi rebranding campaign, which is being discussed all over the PR/marketing blogosphere. Be sure to follow at least a few of the links in that post to get a variety of perspectives (read the comments, too: very… enlightening).

Still on a branding theme, Frank Shaw over at Glass House reflects on brittle brands, especially related to political campaigns. (Warning: political content, although not heavily partisan.)

Kami Huyse at Communication Overtones reminds us that social media are not the be-all and end-all of PR practice: strategy is the key to communication success. Make sure to watch her SlideShare presentation as well: one of you is quoted (and linked, of course, for attribution).

Clemson PR student Cara Mitchell uses stakeholder theory (which we have also discussed in class) to examine the way Comcast uses Twitter. Definitely worth reading, and an excellent example of a student blog post.

Slate Magazine lists the 9 worst press releases it received on Election Day.

October 26, 2008

Some resources for 417 students (and others!)

PRSA has its own blog, ComPRehension. Right now it’s covering the PRSA convention in Detroit, so you can read about some of the latest goings on in the profession. They even have some podcasts of presentations you can listen to. (Class posts based on content from this blog will receive full credit, since I’m only mentioning its existence, not pointing to a specific post.)

Presenting information effectively is a very important skill, not just in public relations. “Infographics” refers to graphic designs that are meant to convey information in ways that are both clear and appealing. Smashing Magazine offers a few examples of infographics that might give you some ideas for your final proposals. And if you would rather work with a visual tool when figuring out what to write and how to organize it, either alone or in collaboration with your teammates, you can try setting up a free account at Spinscape.

Nervous about the job interview process? An interview with the HR director at Edelman, posted at PROpenMic, may help clarify things for you and give you some useful tips.

(The above are all resource suggestions, not potential blog topics.)

Now, for some potential topics if you’re scrambling, or interesting reading if you’re not (I may add to these throughout the week, so you may want to check back):

  • Framingham State College sent out an… unusual fundraising letter that has been widely criticized. Was it a mistake, or are they being judged too harshly?
  • Colin Farrington of CIPR says that public relations, and communication in general, plays a key role in advancing human rights. As is the case with many blog entries, the comments are at least as interesting as the post.
  • US Department of State spokesman Sean McCormack is willing to answer questions from the public via YouTube. Good PR move or potential blunder?
  • What are the critical issues in PR today? Once again, it seems to come down to the unknown quantities of social media.

Happy blogging.

October 25, 2008

A possible reward for checking this blog on a weekend

Filed under: Prof. Gilpin — drgilpin @ 5:32 pm

Discovered via Twitter: Jack O’Dwyer is offering a free copy of his guide to PR firms (perfect for graduating seniors) to the first 50 college students who write to him. He’s also offering a subscription to his professional newsletter.

The book alone normally costs $175, so it’s definitely worth reading the linked post and taking a stab at it.

(Leave a comment if you write to Jack–I’m curious.)

October 1, 2008

An open invitation

Filed under: Prof. Gilpin — drgilpin @ 3:10 pm
Tags: ,

Dr. Karen Miller Russell of the University of Georgia invites PR students to pitch her for the opportunity to post in her blog, which is read by other public relations faculty and students, but also numerous practitioners of PR and other communication fields. The invitation is open for the entire month of October, so you have a little time to think about whether you have a post to suggest.

September 29, 2008

Another bell tolls for the press release

Filed under: Prof. Gilpin — drgilpin @ 11:22 am
Tags: , , ,

Sheila Scarborough, at Every Dot Connects, says she can’t imagine ever sending out another traditional press release. Announcements that the press release is dead are hardly new or blogworthy. However, she does explain how she plans to go about publicizing some of her own upcoming events, so students should find this post worth reading.

Her approach won’t work for every situation, but it’s something to think about.

Bloggers and public relations

Filed under: Prof. Gilpin — drgilpin @ 9:50 am
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I want to point everyone toward a post today over at Jennifer Van Grove’s blog, about building relationships with influential bloggers for public relations purposes. The post raises some interesting questions: Is it worth the effort? Why or why not? How to convince clients and/or employers that the return on investment (ROI) justifies the time spent cultivating bloggers? In what situations is the ROI high enough to be worthwhile, and when is it not?

Jennifer is reporting on a panel she was part of at the recent BlogWorld & New Media Expo, which is also worth reading about.

September 22, 2008

Weekly roundup

Filed under: Prof. Gilpin,Roundup — drgilpin @ 9:22 pm
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The Agency started out the week by discussing viral video, prompted by this PR Squared post. In that post, Todd Defren pointed to a satirical sendup of the viral video phenomenon, but The Agency sees nothing humorous in the concept. Other students took a more favorable position in comments, citing the publicity push for this summer’s hit Batman release, The Dark Knight.

Metis PR focused instead on the changing face of journalism, and the effects of this shift on PR practices. This is obviously a hot topic in journalism and public relations circles alike–see for example Todd Defren’s proposed Social Media News Release. Is traditional journalism really on its deathbed? JMC417 Students overall seem convinced that traditional journalism is around for the long haul, although probably to a much smaller extent than today.

IRIS PR tackled the thorny topic of measurement and monitoring in public relations. The team chose a movie clip to illustrate both the range of possible reactions, and the problem of a lack of response to opinion surveys. Are these major issues in public relations today?

Cast Communication referred to PR Squared (who seems to be getting a lot of traffic from JMC417 students this week!) in questioning whether bloggers can and should be considered full-fledged members of the media. In comments, students have pointed out that not all bloggers are cut from the same cloth: some are experts, and some are the worst kind of dilettantes. There’s no one-size-fits-all description. When is there ever, really? On a related note, TALLfore reflected on the nature of blogging: who chooses to do it, and why. This post was prompted by Kami Huyse’s thoughtful discussion on what it takes to be a successful blogger. But what, exactly, does “successful” mean in this context? Students are still discussing this question in comments.

Search Engine Optimization (SEO) was the focus of Sparkle Media’s post, which builds on this recent entry by Kamy Huyse. Until recently, SEO was all about keywords and other behind-the-scenes strategies for improving search engine results. Kami notes that content is the real focus of web communication, not keywords.

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