Archive for Public Relations

PR Internship Tips

Landing an internship can be difficult. Finding out what makes a good intern is crucial in order to stand out and get the internship you desire.   Check out 5 tips for excelling at PR internships from Regan’s PR Daily by Mandie Emerson for some helpful tips that could help you in your next internship opportunity.


Introductions as a guest speaker

When individuals are asked to be guest speakers, they often must provide their own introductions written so that someone else can introduce them to the audience.

Why are introductions so important?

Why not just let the speaker get up there and start speaking? An introduction plays a crucial role for the guest speaker.

The purpose of an introduction is to:

1) Gather the audience’s attention. People are coming into one place with different things going on in their lives and they may be present but it doesn’t necessarily mean they are ready to be engaged.  However, engaging the audience is different than convincing them that they need to or should listen (even if it gets boring)

An introduction should also…

2) Motivate the audience to listen. Listening is active, hearing is passive. It’s important to let the audience know that this is something they are going to want to or that they need to listen to.

However, with so many bad introductions, many people are ignorant of what a good introduction looks like.

So how do you write an engaging introduction?

Do you remember the last time you heard an engaging introduction? Maybe you stopped what you were doing, broke off a conversation, or got a little excited to hear what the speaker had to say.  Most likely it wasn’t because you knew beforehand that you were excited to hear them, but it was probably the way the presenter introduced the speaker.

Watch Carl Kwam’s video on How to Introduce Another Speaker in 3 Steps


Make a Presentation Like Steve Jobs – YouTube video

Killer Presentation Skills – YouTube video

Listening to podcasts as a PR student can be quite beneficial

This week I started listening to several PR/marketing podcasts. My favorite so far has been The Creative Career pod roll. The one I want to focus on today is An Interview with Stever Robbins, Author of ‘Get it Done Guy’s 9 Steps to Work Less and Do More’

This is great timing to listen to this podcast because it’s nearing the end of the semester and students are hitting that crush time where being intentional about time and knowing how to use it wisely is crucial. I absolutely loved what he had to say because on of the concepts that he mentioned in the podcast that is in his book is this concept of “concurring technology.”

Robbins said in his interview with Allie Osmar Siarto that “the problem with technology is that it has made everything to easy.” He goes on to explain how since some things that we do online are so easy we just do them and it basically distracts us from our main objective or our top priorities.  He explains that if things took more effort, that we would actually pre-determine whether or not it was something we really needed to do.


As a PR student and also PR practitioners that are new to the industry can be greatly benefited by listening to daily podcasts, even weekly podcasts.  It’s easy to do and you can do it while you work out or make dinner. I would highly recommend taking time at least once each week to learn something new and be refreshed by other learners and professionals in the industry. Every time you listen can get you one more step ahead of  your colleagues. You never know what you may pick up and learn from these.

Feel free to share your experience with podcasting and if you have any podcasts you like to listen to that are PR related, go ahead and leave a link!

Happy podcasting! 🙂

You can also follow Allie Osmar Siarto (allieo) on Twitter.

Get the book ‘Get it Done Guy’s 9 Steps to Work Less and Do More’  on Amazon.

How Poynter Can Point You in the Right Direction

My Writing for Public Relations and Advertising (COMM4333) class does quite a bit with the Poynter website, specifically with the News University Courses (see also previous post).  However, there are several additional resources within Poynter along with the NewsU courses that you may find quite beneficial as you begin your career in public relations.

Poynter has the latest news as well as upcoming training and events which include webinars and online seminars.

If you’re not familiar with Poynter’s NewsUniversity, you should definitely check it out. Also see previous posts on my blog about some of the NewsU courses. NewsU has 40 self-directed courses, totally free yet completely worth the time. Not to mention Online Group Seminars, Webinars, Video Tutorials, and many others.

Poynter also has “How To’s”  for news gathering and storytelling, digital strategies, leadership and management and community engagement.  Poynter also has online chats that you can participate in.

You can “Like” Poynter on Facebook

Negative Comments not so negative?

I was reading a couple articles from Ragan’s PR Daily.  One was called 7 tips for managing negative comments online.

It had some great pointers on how to respond when someone leaves a negative comment on your blog.

 FIRST: Listen to what is being said.

SECOND: Respond quickly

THIRD: Take it offline

FOURTH: Be apologetic

FIFTH: Know when to walk away

SIXTH: Know when to asks for help

Language of the Image

I recently took another one of Poynter’s (free) News University courses and I must say this was one of the most enjoyable ones I’ve ever done. It’s called Language of the Image.  I enjoyed it because it inspired me to take more beautiful photos.  It made me realize that there is a lot that goes into making a photo memorable. It’s about being able to identify those elements of what makes a photograph stand out, what makes you pause as you’re scrolling through hundreds of photos or stop and gaze at a photo in a magazine.

The course was laid out in four different sections:

Photo types — There’s three types of photos:  informational, passive and active.

Single elements — There are fifteen different photographic elements that help an image tell a story.

  1. Graphic
  2. Quality of light
  3. Emotion
  4. Juxtaposition
  5. Mood
  6. Sense of place
  7. Point of entry
  8. Impact
  9. Rule of thirds
  10. Perspective
  11. Surprise
  12. Layering
  13. Moment
  14. Personality portrait

Multiple elements — Good photographers use more than just one element to enhance an image’s storytelling potential.(In this section you match up which elements are used in each of the particular photos).

Different approach — There are many different combinations of photographic elements that can make an image effective.  For instance, two photographers can go to the same event and take pictures of basically the same things, but the approach in which each one takes (i.e. quality of light, point of entry, rule of thirds, layering, etc) can make the difference between a photo you glance at and that doesn’t catch your eye, and one that catches your eye and keeps you there, makes you think, and provokes emotion.

I highly recommend taking this (short) course as it packed with valuable and easy tips and tricks. Knowing these qualities and considering them when taking photos can enhance the quality tremendously.  I was very surprised by the quality of the photographs.  I would love to learn more about photographs!

Social Media

Today, more than ever people are utilizing social media as a part of everyday life. Social media takes on many different forms. 23 Types of Social Media Sites. The social media that I utilize most often are:

1. Video Sharing. I absolutely love YouTube! I use this more than anything else.  It’s basically my “Google” for anything from “how-to’s” to recipes.  I like YouTube because it’s so popular. So many people are contributing and putting themselves out there that I can find pretty much anything that I need answers to. I also watch YouTube videos as a pass time. I watch videos on how to do different things like knitting, cooking, or fixing a car tire. There’s also great comedy videos, music videos, lectures, and movies.

2. Social Networking. Specifically, the platform I use is Facebook.  On a typical day, I might get on 3 to 4 times, depending on how busy I am.  This tends to be my least favorite because it can soak up a whole hour without me even noticing. And what did I do in that hour? ….Browse statuses, look at pictures, chat with people… I try to make a point now, to get on there to check my inbox, make a few legitimate connections with people and get off as soon as I find myself aimlessly scrolling through statuses.

3. Blogging. I also enjoy blogging. It’s probably one of my favorite thing to do because I like to express myself in writing and I love to see that non-journalistic type writing that just comes from the heart. I enjoy reading blogs on missions and travel. Once I get into my career, my goal is to really get serious about blogging and use it as part of a freelancing tool of some sort.

4. Podcasting. I started listening to podcasts when I stopped driving as much. Typically, in the mornings on my hour drive to school I would listen to a Joyce Meyer sermon or Chip Ingram sermon (those are just my favorite two, there’s plenty more) on the radio.  Now, since I’m at my computer or have my iPod, I can simply download a Joyce Meyer podcast or listen to a Chip Ingram podcast on my computer.

Blog Comments

Blog comments serve several different purposes. Lets think of a few…

1. To give additional input on a topic. This gives the reader an opportunity to chime in and offer his or her thoughts relating to the topic.

2. They give feedback to the author. (positive feedback, constructive criticism and also negative feedback)

3. Comments say to the author, “keep writing someone’s listening”. Comments also allow the author know that people are reading their blog. The author at least knows that someone took the time to read their blog and that their blog is interesting enough to be responded to. From the author’s point of view, it may seem like a one-way conversation at times. The author appreciates it and hopefully is encouraged when he or she sees that people are taking interest in their work.

Overall, I think commenting on blogs is almost a responsibility.  It’s like a relationship…weird analogy, I know, but stick with me here… It can’t be a one way street. There’s got to be a little give and take, a little responding to people who are taking the initiative, taking a risk, putting their thoughts out there, seeking to be heard, understood, needed, and basically communicated with.

In order to write an effective blog comment, I think it’s first of all having the right attitude and motive. I’ve seen many rude, obnoxious, and downright disrespectful comments.  Whenever I comment on someone’s blog or post, or anything relating to that, I try to put myself in the shoes of the writer.  How might I express my opinion/thought or comment about their content and be respectful and essentially be an asset in the development of their thoughts/talents and also an encourager as a writer or producer of some sort of content.

They could easily not do anything at all. I respect those who are willing to express their thoughts/personalities/talents, whether good or bad, perfect, non-perfect, learned or not, ammature or professional.

Here’s some examples I had in mind…

(Although all of these examples are not blogs, it’s basically the same concept.)

How to Leave Meaningful Blog Comments

10 Reasons Commenting is Good for Bloggers

Bah, humbug!

Want to capture people’s attention? Just say something controversial and your bound to have  tons of publicity. Fox Chicago anchor Robin Robinson did just that by insisting “There. Is. No. Santa.” Now, good or bad, I think it’s pretty funny. It did get people talking and that was their intention.

Here’s the video:

Read the article from

To Smiley or Not to Smiley…

I just read an article in Ragan’s PR Daily website posing the question of whether or not smiley faces are to be considered appropriate for the workplace. Although I include smilies in my text messages, facebook, and personal emails, I am a little hesitant to say I also think it’s appropriate in a work invironment. However, it is all relative.  In an email to anyone higher up than me, I would refrain from using smilies because of the respect factor. One of my equal counterparts, I might be inclined because in that environment you are working together and building different types of relationships with those people than you would your bosses. That’s just my take on it.  What do you think? Leave a comment!

READ: Does the smiley face have a place in the PR workplace?

By Arik Hanson | Posted: November 28, 2011

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