Corporate Public Relations – Marketing Communications, Environmental Relations, & Corporate Philanthropy

The world of corporate communication is perhaps Public Relations’ biggest stage.

In corporate PR, there are many different ways fo communication, but all of the mediums buts have a unified message, this is called Integrated Marketing Communications. All of these efforts are about gaining publicity.

One of the biggest issues with corporate PR today is corporate social responsibility. Most people believe that corporations should be responsible both socially and environmentally. People are mor likely to support a socially and environmentally responsible company

Corporate sponsorships are one of the most prominent ways corporate PR is practiced. Almost any product or event can have a corporate sponsorship. This is a big way of generating publicity.

Check out my presentation for details and examples!


Interview with Liz Craven – PR Professional

Elizabeth Craven

Graduate of Florida State University

Magazine Editor and Communications Manager for Proad Media

 

Elizabeth is a wife, mother and local business woman. Liz is the Co-Owner of Proad media in Lakeland, FL with her husband Wes Craven. Proad media publishes Polk county’s leading women’s magazine, Woman to Woman as well as an acclaimed annual guide to senior living, the Polk Elder Care Guide. Being part owner of a small business means she, as well as her husband, fill many roles. In addition to being the editor for all of Proad Media’s magazine, Liz coordinates many of the public and community relations for the company, as well as advertising and networking.

 

How did you get started in the PR World?

It was never really my intention but when my husband and his former business partner started Proad I became part of the team too. We are a small company so we all share many responsibilities. We have designers and writers that drive our magazine production put because we are ad based and not subscription based, it was really important to have someone with the main focus of making connections.

 

What is some advice you would give someone starting out in the PR Profession?

Make communication your first priority. People appreciate prompt and engaging responses. This is one aspect that can not get pushed to the back burner. Lack of communication can mean the loss of a potential client or a burning of some very valuable bridges. Also, another thing is, knowing your audience. A lot of our readership are middle aged to elderly, so I noticed that there are a lot of technological advancements that are available for the purpose of promotion. However, I realized not all of it would be effective because we don’t seem to draw many techy early adopters.

 

What is the most difficult thing about working in PR?

Sometimes it’s hard to get out there and put on the happy face and attend endless networking events and meetings when it has honestly been a crappy day at the office. I get to see my husband stressed out when something goes wrong but then I leave the office and go to a chamber of commerce meeting and talk about how great things are going.

 

What do you like most about working in PR?

I love seeing the impact we can have on our community. As we build these relationships they are not only about how we can better the company they are also about really working with the people that believe in us. Being a small business, he have the opportunity to make a lot of individual connections and are able to help their business and help them succeed. It’s very rewarding.

Catch Liz’s Blog at WomanToWomanMagazine.com

Blogging. Try It.

So, if you have eve thought about blogging bet have not yet, I really encourage you to try it. It does take a little bit of commitment, but I you pic something you are passionate about and can convince some people to follow you, it becomes a really cool experience. As far as topics are concerned, the possibilities are limitless… literally. Technology, fashion, cars, education, celebrities, heck, you can even blog about blogging! The following are some of the most popular in the world and my favorites, I encourage you to check them out!

1. Engadget.com

The ultimate source for the latest and greatest in tech. Insightful reviews and a electronic consumer’s first consult. I check it every day.

 

 

 

 

2. Mashable.com

Social Media Guru. Every day I can find a story about how social media has been used in some remarkable way.

 

 

 

 

 

3. PrDaily.com

As a result of this class I have come to love Ragan PR Daily. There are so many innovation ideas and excellent example in their posts.

 

 

 

 

4. 365q.ca

Great quotes set over beautiful images. Very Inspiring.

 

 

 

 

 

5. HuffingtonPost.com

The  latest in news. Great thought provoking commentary.

 

 

 

 

 

6. TMZ.com

Celebrity Gossip. I’m not obsessed with it, but they always seem to be right….

Those are my blog suggestions. I don’t know of too many but these really are great. Here are a few more tips to get you started.

 

 

 

1. Pick something you are passionate about. No one wants to write about something they are bored with. Pick something that inspired you. Make it feel like play… not work.

2. Make sure you are regular… with blogging that is. There is nothing more unsparing than an “even three month” blogger. If your readers see that you seldom post anything, they won’t be your readers for long.

3. Encourage reader response and feed back. One of the best ways to keep you writing is to know that someone is reading. Encourage you readers to respond to your posts and add comments. A good way to do this is by asking open ended question and asking for opinions so that readers feel that their input is invited.

4. Finally, Sexy blogs are better blogs. Don’t skimp on good design. Spend some time and pick a good theme that really reflects you or your topic. Nothing too busy, nothing too “MySpacey” (Word Credit – Prof. Barbra Nixon). A clean, fun, design is what you are looking for. Make sure to always us picture or some multimedia in your posts. It’s the internet!! The sky is the limit.

Once again, Have Fun!

Guest Blogger: Elizabeth Telg

I love this post. As an upperclassmen in college, sometimes I feel so frustrated about my age and where I am in life nd what I am “stuck” doing and most of all, how I want to bypass it all. This post is great practical advice for those who’re ailing like me.

Why grow up so fast? If you are in your twenties, or are closely approaching, this article is for you. Your quarter life crisis if for those in your early twenties who are feeling the pressure of being an adult when it is still painful to peel your N’SYNC stickers off your notebooks and paint over the I ❤ Taylor Hanson doodles in your closet(maybe that was just me). Whatever stage you are at in the quarter-life crisis, take this advice found on Hello Giggles blog to heart.

1. Go out on a weeknight when you have to be up early the next morning. Being young is about being responsible. Go crazy. Go out with you friends. When you do this, you will not be on Facebook or watching re-runs of the Office wallowing in self-pity. Feeling irresponsible and naive will take away the fear of growing up, if only for a night.

2. Make an emergency shopping trip to buy 5” heels. Buying a pair of hot heels will make you feel a few years younger, and who doesn’t love buying a new pair of stilettos?

3. Don’t have matching furniture. “Nice furniture says, “I’m sensible. I plan on staying here a while. I know how to take care of my expensive personal belongings. I have a savings account.” Read: Adult. Weird colored arm chairs and couches with mysterious stains on the undersides of the cushions say, “I could leave at any moment to go work on a fig orchard in Turkey and just leave this crap behind. I didn’t want to invest in a new couch because I’ve given out way too many copies of my keys and can’t remember who might come to crash on it. I’d rather spend the money on shoes (see number two).” None of that sounds wise or responsible to me.”

4. Get a quirky, useless pet. I want to get a hedgehog and name him Sir Spikey Pants, but I can’t get myself to do it yet. Maybe once I graduate I will be able to get one since I won’t be under the rules of my university. Having a hedgehog is anything but practical, and that will make me feel so young and alive!

5. Take ironic day trips. I am an adventurer. I will always be up for a random day trip. I encourage this not only for those suffering through their quarter-life crisis, but anyone wanting some escape from their daily life. If you feel trapped, alone, bored, lazy, or just want to have a great day… Go on a day trip to the Dinosaur theme-park down the road or the al paca farm a few hours away. I mean… Why not?

I’m All about Shortcut’s – “10 Sure-Fire Headline Formulas That Work”

Here are 10 tip’s for writing blog headlines I found at CopyBlogger.com

1. Who Else Wants [blank]?

Starting a headline with “Who Else Wants…” is a classic social proofstrategy that implies an already existing consensus desire. While overused in the Internet marketing arena, it still works like gangbusters for other subject matter.

  • Who Else Wants a Great WordPress Theme?
  • Who Else Wants a Higher Paying Job?
  • Who Else Wants More Fun and Less Stress When on Vacation?

2. The Secret of [blank]

This one is used quite a bit, but that’s because it works. Share insider knowledge and translate it into a benefit for the reader.

  • The Secret of Successful Podcasting
  • The Secret of Protecting Your Assets in Litigation
  • The Secret of Getting Your Home Loan Approved

3. Here is a Method That is Helping [blank] to [blank]

Simply identify your target audience and the benefit you can provide them, and fill in the blanks.

  • Here is a Method That is Helping Homeowners Save Hundreds on Insurance
  • Here is a Method That is Helping Children Learn to Read Sooner
  • Here is a Method That is Helping Bloggers Write Better Post Titles

4. Little Known Ways to [blank]

A more intriguing (and less common) way of accomplishing the same thing as “The Secret of…” headline.

  • Little Known Ways to Save on Your Heating Bill
  • Little Known Ways to Hack Google’s Gmail
  • Little Known Ways to Lose Weight Quickly and Safely

5. Get Rid of [problem] Once and For All

A classic formula that identifies either a painful problem or an unfulfilled desire that the reader wants to remedy.

  • Get Rid of Your Unproductive Work Habits Once and For All
  • Get Rid of That Carpet Stain Once and For All
  • Get Rid of That Lame Mullet Hairdo Once and For All

6. Here’s a Quick Way to [solve a problem]

People love quick and easy when it comes to solving a nagging problem.

  • Here’s a Quick Way to Get Over a Cold
  • Here’s a Quick Way to Potty Train Junior
  • Here’s a Quick Way to Backup Your Hard Drive

7. Now You Can Have [something desirable] [great circumstance]

The is the classic “have your cake and eat it too” headline — and who doesn’t like that?

  • Now You Can Quit Your Job and Make Even More Money
  • Now You Can Meet Sexy Singles Online Without Spending a Dime
  • Now You Can Own a Cool Mac and Still Run Windows

8. [Do something] like [world-class example]

Gatorade milked this one fully with the “Be Like Mike” campaign featuring Michael Jordan in the early 1990s.

  • Speak Spanish Like a Diplomat
  • Party Like Paris Hilton
  • Blog Like an A-Lister

9. Have a [or] Build a [blank] You Can Be Proud Of

Appeal to vanity, dissatisfaction, or shame. Enough said.

  • Build a Body You Can Be Proud Of
  • Have a Smile You Can Be Proud Of
  • Build a Blog Network You Can Be Proud Of

10. What Everybody Ought to Know About [blank]

Big curiosity draw with this type of headline, and it acts almost as a challenge to the reader to go ahead and see if they are missing something.

  • What Everybody Ought to Know About ASP
  • What Everybody Ought to Know About Adjustable Rate Mortgages
  • What Everybody Ought to Know About Writing Great Headlines

Find these headline templates useful? Bookmark this page at del.icio.us for future reference.

This is the seventh installment in a series called Magnetic Headlines.

Measurements Count

Just like any area of business, results matter. Public relations is first and foremost a service industry. Public relations practitioners exist to reconcile the interests of the company and the public. There are many methods, strategies, and tactics that public relations professionals to do this. However is would be impossible to know how to better and adjust strategies and methods without getting feedback to gauge the progress made by the methods being employed.

One of the most direct and effective ways that PR practitioners gather feedback and information is by taking surveys. Surveys can be taken in many ways they can be face to face, online, or by paper ballot. Surveys are valuable to for gathering public opinion for just about anything.

However, surveys must be intentional and directed. They can even be made very specific to gauge the opinion of a target audience.

Once a public relations professional has gathered this information. The numbers can be analyzed by a marketing specialist and used to formulate to plans to better the company’s image. This data can be used to serve customers better, engage potential customers, find out what the public expects of the company. Surveys and the data gleaned from them can even prompt a company to make very important decisions lake branding and marketing changes.

Seeing PR

So many things were made possible with the advent of the home television. I opened up countless opportunities for entertainment, information, culture and much more. However I think the effect that the advent of the television profoundly effected the fields of advertising in conjunction with public relations.

So it’s the early 1920’s and this revolutionary new technology has been invented. People are still trying to take advantage of all of the potential uses. The television has opened up a whole new medium for the world of advertising. This means PR professionals have a whole new weapon to ad to their PR arsenal. In conjunction with more traditional personal ways to build corporate and consumer relations, the television provide a whole new way make that initial contact and first impression. Since public relations is all about perception, what better war to offer consumers a chance to perceive you for the first time from the comfort of their own homes. The television not only advanced opportunities for PR with products but also largely in politics. For the for the first time almost anyone would have opportunity to “attend” debates and speeches and get to “know” the leaders of their country. A large part of PR is sending messages. I believe that only the modern advent of the internet rivals the ability of television to communicate messages.

This would have been such an exciting time to be a public relations professional. Although this time marks the advent of so many new technologies and would have been exciting no matter your profession, I think it is no too dissimilar from our own. Technology seems advancing at an uncanny pace and I think the buzz that accompanies this age of innovation is only  a product of what began this many years ago in the 20’s.

In Defense of Tacos

Early this year California law group, Beasley, Allen, Crow, Methvin, Portis & Miles, filed suit against the ridiculously cheep Mexican fast-food restaurant chain. They claim that Taco Bell is guilty of false advertising when they refer to their product as “seasoned beef” because it is believed the Taco Bell’s “meat” filling is only about 36% real beef that compliments a colorful mixture of fillers and extenders.

The lawyers refer to the United States Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) definition of “beef”: “flesh of cattle” and says ground beef should consist of chopped fresh and/or frozen beef “without the addition of beef fat as such, shall not contain more than 30 percent fat, and shall not contain added water, phosphates, binders or extenders.”


Instead of meeting this minimum requirement they claim that “ When customers bite into a crunchy beef taco, they are actually munching on water, wheat oats, soy lecithin, maltodrextrin, anti-dusting agent and modified corn starch, the lawsuit claims.”

In response to these claims the President and Chief Concept Officer, Greg Creed, made the following statement:

“At Taco Bell, we buy our beef from the same trusted brands you find in the supermarket, like Tyson Foods. We start with 100 percent USDA-inspected beef. Then we simmer it in our proprietary blend of seasonings and spices to give our seasoned beef its signature Taco Bell taste and texture,” he said in the statement. “We are proud of the quality of our beef and identify all the seasoning and spice ingredients on our website.”

He went on the say that the lawyers who sued got their “facts” absolutely wrong, and that Taco Bell plans to take legal action for these false claims.

I’ve heard Taco Bell’s meat called many less than appetizing things; “Dog Food, “Grade-D Meat”, “The Recipe for Diarrhea” and much worse. So hearing about a Taco Bell meat law suit actually was no surprise to me. Nonetheless, I think that Taco Bell actually handled this situation pretty well. They made a quick concise statement and poignant addressed the le

gal matters in question. However right they maybe still has not removed the stigma from Taco Bell’s food quality. So, I think they should launch a campaign to address this perception.

Info Found At: http://latino.foxnews.com/latino/health/2011/01/25/lawsuit-claims-taco-bell-using-real-beef/

The Taco Bell logo is a registered trademark of Yum! Brand Foods and they retains the rights as such

Me & Difficult Conversations

Upon taking the Poynter News U Course, Dealing with Difficult Conversations, I learned about my default tendencies to handle conflict. I also learned when those default tendencies are useful and when to adapt and take advantage of other conflict management styles.

Conflict is unavoidable in life, although some try their hardest to do so. So I believe it is quite beneficial to handle it tactfully. This means coming into the conversation prepared as well leaving the conversation with the most positive out come possible no matter how negative the conversation may have begun. This course also taught when one should ease the person into the topic versus when it is more beneficial to start with the bad news.

After taking a short conflict personality quiz I learned that favor two different conflict management styles: competition as well as accommodation. My competitive tendencies are best utilized when I need to stand up for an issue of great importance that means a lot to me. However overusing this style of conflict management for remedial problems makes you look like an overaggressive bully. Accommodation however is very useful for dealing with someone in authority as well as preserving relationships. Still, you have to know when to take a stand and not allow others as well as yourself to walked over. These are just the style that I have tendencies for, there are many others:

Compromise – Compromise works when a decision has to be made in a hurry, the other side seems willing, and we all feel good about taking less than we wanted. It is a good “backup” style. But if we approach every conflict thinking “compromise,” we may miss chances for creative resolution that gets all parties what they want.

Collaboration – Collaboration works when the parties really value a partnership and are willing to take time to keep asking each other good questions about goals, needs and interests. When done properly, collaboration forges strong bonds. But it must be genuine, not manipulative, and the relationship should be worth the investment of time.

Avoidance – Avoidance works when the other individual is dangerous or all but impossible to work with. It is a self-preservation tactic that keeps us safe, but also encourages bullies. It can lead to miserable working conditions or the loss of good people who simply choose to work elsewhere. Conflict avoidance can cause serious problems in the workplace.

So, it is my goal to effectively balance both of my default styles to more effectively handle difficult conversations. I also will make a significant effort to incorporate the other  conflict management styles that this course addresses.

Journa-publi-adver-brand-keting.

Ever feel like some there is a lot of redundancy in this industry? If so, it is probably because you have not taken the time to research how each of field is different and has their own specialty. But don’t be offended… I had the same perception not long before I wrote this post. So let me share what I’ve learned – here goes!

Advertising – “a form of communication used to persuade an audience (viewers, readers or listeners) to take some action with respect to products, ideas, or services.”

Wikipedia

This means that the main objective of advertising is to get a potential consumer to react.  Companies advertise to get people to buy, refer, vote for, and otherwise advance the commercial objective of a company, product, or candidate. Advertising is often extremely expensive and quite an elaborate effort but only is meant to be heard or watched for thirty seconds or catch a glance. Advertisers try to appeal to a consumers commercial interests, often determined by their purchasing or polling history. The actions advertisers take are based on the information acquired and analyzed by marketers. Ads need to have strong branding and and are often repetitive in nature to ensure maximum exposure. Advertisers somewhat depend on interaction with media coverage and journalists for exposure.

Public Relations – “the actions of a corporation, store, government, individual, etc., in promoting goodwill between itself and the public, the community, employees, customers, etc.”

– Wikipedia

PR is about building, repairing, and maintaining relationships in effort to be positively perceived by customers, employees, and community. The actions PR professionals take to build these relationships are also based on the research and analysis of marketers. PR professionals utilize advertising to help promote the positive image they wish to spread. Public relations functions as an extensions of the company’s or individual’s self image. PR professionals have the public’s interests in mind as much as they do for the entities the represent. Media coverage and reporting is essential to building a good public image and cooperation with journalists is one of the best ways to accomplish this.

Marketing – the process used to determine what products or services may be of interest to customers, and the strategy to use in sales, communications and business development.

– Principles of Marketing (Text Book)

The work marketers accomplish are often the basis for the actions that advertisers, and public relations professionals take. The statistics they produce and strategies they formulate are an entity’s initial step to representation and promotion of their product service or brand. Marketer conduct polls analyze markets and consumer reactions in order to create effective marketing strategies. A company or individual then implements these strategies through various advertising and PR campaigns and efforts.

Branding – “name, term, design, symbol, or any other feature that identifies one seller’s good or service as distinct from those of other sellers.”

–  American Marketing Association

PR Professionals, marketers, and advertisers utilize and encourage strong entity branding and a part of their strategies to accomplish their respective organizational goals. Strong branding in advertising helps an entity have a constant, recognizable, and unique presence in the marketplace. Marketers often study how consumers respond to brands and recommend how they should be altered and and exposed for an entity to optimize profit. Public relations is all about promoting the brand. PR professionals wish their client’s consumers, employees, and community to associate the feelings of good will they have for the company or individual with a strong tangible brand.

Journalism – “the practice of investigation and reporting of events, issues and trends to a broad audience.”

– Wikipedia

Journalism is all about relaying information. Beyond this, the concept of journalism can have wide variation. News related journalism is expected to be factual and unbiased. Although this is the supposed goal, any one news story and be reported in various different ways. However journalism is present in many different different ways. Magazines, blogs, editorials, all require journalists to investigate and report to their audience. Different audiences require a particular style of journalism. Journalists can write for entertainment, news, information, instruction, as well as various special interests. Journalism provides an avenue for marketers to gather information about how the entity they represent are perceived in the media. Press conferences and releases are often cited in the media.

I hope this brief explanation of each of theses areas provides a clearer understanding of how each field of study is unique as well as how they overlap and relate to each other.

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