To all “New Beginnings” fans, its been a pleasure writing to you this semester. But as everyone knows, all good things must come to an end (well at least for a little while anyways). So I hope you enjoy my last blog for Public Relations Applications. It has been quite an experience.
This last blog is dedicated to the top 10 things I’ve learned this year about the practice of public relations. Here they are:
10. What is public relations?
I always thought PR was like advertising and the purpose of PR was to make people want to buy a product or accept a certain idea or come to an event. Well, that’s not technically the case. Public relations professionals work hard to create an open environment with their target audience, or “publics.” According to Public Relations: Strategies and Tactics, “Public relations is a process involving many subtle and far-reaching aspects. It includes research and analysis, policy formation, programming, communication, and feedback from numerous publics.”
9. Blog Commenting
This is a very critical practice to those wishing to maintain a successful blog. My advice is to find blogs that write about similar topics as your own. Comment on their blogs and hopefully they will comment on yours.
8. Using Social Media in Public Relations
It is important of public relations professional to keep up with their publics. In order to do this, it is a good idea for companies to set up accounts with different forms of social media such as Facebook, Twitter, MySpace, or engage in activities like blogging or podcasting. This way communication becomes 2-way.
7. Resume Writing
One of the most shocking facts I learned over the semester is that employers only give resumes 15 seconds before they decide which pile they go into: possible new hires or the trash. It is depressing, but not everything in life is fair, right. Because of this it is necessary to check out resume-building websites and utilize the luxury of building relationships though networking websites.
6. Research is the Key
The most overlooked piece to the puzzle, yet probably the most important is research. In fact, when it comes to the RACE process, research should always take the most amount of time. There isn’t much more I can say about this because it should be a give-in. Make sure you know what you are taking about before you talk about it.
5. Press Release Format
Did you know most news stories aren’t even prepared or written by the journalists of the newspaper you are reading? I didn’t before I took this class. Many stories are created by a team of public relations professionals hoping to gain free publicity for a product, event, or idea.
One of the more difficult jobs public relations practitioners will have to handle are those dealing with crises. This section of the class was actually the one I became most interested in because of the variety of issues that can arise on a given day. The crisis I found most appalling was probably about the Wendy’s “Finger-in-chili” hoax. It was cool to see how Wendy’s reacted in such a positive way and worked its way back into the rankings of top fast food outlet.
I didn’t even want to think about this one. I was a Twitter-hater before this class, but now I really enjoy it. Although I probably don’t use it correctly, or in ways it should be used for public relations, I find that its a great way to let everyone know how you feel about something. I also find it very useful when I am thinking about going to a movie, and using the search feature to see instant movie reviews. I should have used it before paying 7 dollars to see Remember Me.
2. Just write
Kneale Mann said it best, when you start blogging, just write, but more importantly write about something that interests you.
1. Finding my way
After taking this class and taking Kneale Mann’s advice I started finding my way. I really enjoyed writing about public relations issues that were occurring in the world of sports, dedicating most of my PR connections posts to baseball, football, and basketball. Because of this, I have been looking up possible careers and internships with professional sports teams.
So if you survived reading all 10 items, thank you for keeping up with me. But lucky for you, you don’t have to read anymore.