PR Campaigns – The blog

March 24, 2009

A Branding Challenge to Write Home About

Filed under: Precision PR — laurenmac87 @ 8:23 am
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While reviewing PR blogs I came across a post by Dan Wool in the Valley PR Blog that surprised me and directly relates to my current PR internship. I work at a local alternative rock radio station as a PR/Promotions Intern and member of the street team.  While I have only been working there since January I have been an avid listener of the station for all four years I’ve been attending college here.  

In April of last year the station underwent a huge shift as they replaced their local morning show host with a much less expensive syndicated host. This caused an uproar from station fans and habitual listeners of the host that I still feel the backlash of as a member of the street team today.  

Fast forward to today, where the media has taken an even bigger dive and in reorganization of their company, CBS fired the syndicated host. For our company this meant an entire re-branding process of the station, and with it thousands of dollars and hours, completely wasted, and no morning show host to boot.  

So when I read this post, indicating that our old station favorite has resurfaced on the airwaves of a competing station, I was baffled.  How, with no morning show host, are we supposed to keep morning listeners once they find out that their old favorite is back on the radio on ANOTHER station?  How do we position our station and brand our morning show with enough vigor to keep our morning listeners? I hate to sound bleak but this is the first time this economic crisis has really hit home for me. It looks to me as though the road ahead is going to be an bumpy one.


February 16, 2009

Who Owns Social Media?

Filed under: LAM Creative — mgjersvi @ 10:18 pm
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I first heard the term “social media” in JMC 301: Intermediate Newswriting.  I was considering a story on text messaging and my teacher said I should point it in a  “social media” direction.  I had no idea what she was talking about.   This term has now inundated my life.  I think I understand how many organizations are feeling about this phenomenon: like  I’ve been training in the kiddie pool and now I’m supposed to swim laps across the Atlantic.  Despite my fears (being eaten by a shark, drowning, etc.) I plunged into the great saltiness.  I am now the proud owner of accounts on Twitter (feel free to follow me – MeganGj), Delicious, Word Press (so what if they were required for class), MySpace and Facebook.

Ah, Facebook.

As of February 4, 2009, Facebook owns all content posted on, transmitted through or pretty much distantly related to its server EVEN AFTER AN ACCOUNT HAS BEEN DELETED, and it can use your content for any purpose including advertising.

Facebook’s updated Tems of Service have caused a stir on Twitter with many tweets expressing frustration and plans to end accounts.  Several of the tweets complained about Facebook owning everything they posted without acknowledging that users freely choose what to post.  (Granted it is probably easier to vent in 140 characters than to weigh both sides of an issue.) None of the tweets I read mentioned the fact that Facebook always did own what you post.  The only difference now is that its ownership does not expire when you cancel your account, as Jacob Botter of  The Consumerist explains.

I had a minor internal struggle about this issue.  Here’s a summary of my thought process:

  • That’s messed up.
  • I can’t really explain why that’s messed up, it just is.
  • I’m finished with social media…except what’s required for JMC 417.
  • I guess I’m really frustrated that Facebook always owned my content and I didn’t know about it.
  • I guess I always knew that I had to be careful about what I posted because the Internet is forever.  Once something’s out there it’s out there for good.
  • If it weren’t for other forms of social media I wouldn’t know about this issue.
  • I guess social media is not completely evil…I guess.

It looks like I’ll be keeping my Facebook, at least for now.   I will definitely be reviewing my privacy settings though and reading those Terms of Service agreements more carefully on other social media sites.  I certainly understand why so many organizations are wary about jumping into this ocean.

What do you think?  Should we head back to the kiddie pool or keep paddling away?

We are PR Practitioners, Not Ambulance Chasers

Filed under: 3's Company PR — lmdavis2 @ 7:58 pm
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Charlotte Risch made an interesting post  in last week’s Valley PR Blog, she claimed that PR practitioners may be the new “ambulance chasers” replacing lawyers, who were previously attached to nickname. The derogatory term, in short, is defined by TIME magazine as a lawyer who persuades an injured person to hire them to sue for personal damages.

Risch made this comparison to ambulance chasers after Nadya Suleman, who gave bith to octoplets in early February after already having six previous children, hired a publicist instead of a nanny. I understand why Risch made this comparison, Suleman should be more focused on her 14 children rather than her relationship with the media. However, Suleman became an overnight sensation in the media.

At first it was positive attention but the headlines started turning against her when the truth behind her controversial pregnancy was revealed. The situation changed from a sensation to a crisis and who better to handle that than a publicist that specializes in crisis management. An ethical PR practitioner should serve as a mediator between Suleman and the media  and advise her on actions she could take to improve her reputation in the public’s eye.  However, if a PR practitioner acts unethically by drawing more attention to the client by making her out to be a “victim,” that would be the “ambulance chaser” that Risch is referring to.

In response to Risch’s frustration with people asking what PR is and questioning its involvement in cases like Suleman, I think we should take this as an opportunity to explain to people what crisis management is. If we explain that when crisis management is done properly and ethically it can be benefical to all parties involved and something good can come out a bad situation.

I understand the resoning behind Risch’s analogy, but we should be hesitant to associate the PR profession to more derrogatory terms than it already is. As long as practioners stick to the ethics the profession is based on (PRSA Ethics), critics will have fewer opportunities to attach it to derogatory terms.

February 15, 2009

The Hunt

While hard at work simultaneously hunting for jobs and fighting off an impending quarter-life crisis, most of the time I’ve been spending online has been dedicated to… you guessed it, job searching! At the suggestion of my former boss (and current NYC, PR, music, life, etc. guru) I created an account on  It’s a cool site with good networking potential, but on first look I was left a little boggled by how to best take advantage of it.

Though I’ve known about LinkedIn for a a little over a year now, my previous history of addiction to social networking sites kept my desire for yet anohter account at bay.  That is, until I stumbled across this post by Amber Naslund that rekindled my curiosity.  

Though the post is technically about LinkedIn, her general tips and tricks got me thinking immediately how I could apply them to my new Jobster account.  The two sites are very similar, the main difference being their design.  The two seem to me the MySpace and Facebook of the professional social networking sphere.  

The post was very helpful in spurring some creativity to create a killer profile (or maybe profiles, now that I’ve unleashed a new wave of social networking accounts to keep me occupied).  The most resounding point I took away from her words of wisdom: your profile is all about determining what sets you apart and finding the best way to show that to employers.  These sites give you all the tools to showcase your writing skills and to link to your blogs, social sites, etc. 

My favorite Naslund tip?:

  • “When you pen your profile – especially the summary – think in terms of what you accomplished and what your goals are, not the tasks you’re responsible for on a day to day basis. Those are interchangeable for other people with your type of job. Instead, focus on what makes *you* and *your abilities* different than the next person with your same title. Write as though you’re the one looking to recruit you. What would you want to read? A job description, or a colorful picture of what you’ve done and aim to do?”

How about you Blogosphere? Do you use Jobster/LinkedIn? Which is better? Do you have any tips or tricks or success stories to share?

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