Archives for posts with tag: public relations

I’m sitting in the airport, getting ready to go back to reality. It’s been almost a year since I wrote my first post. In that time span a lot has changed; my world has changed. I feel like it is time for a reintroduction.

I started off lucky. I was fortunate enough to get a college internship a year and a half ago at a Chapter of the U.S. Green Building Council. While the experience was great, it was the people I met during that time that I need to give thanks to, they showed me my potential.

The Executive Director of the Chapter, Jane Baxter Lynn, became a mentor to me. I would work hard, and that obviously earned her respect, but it was her passion and dedication that drove me to work harder, and be better. During my time there, I went from a college student to a communications professional. I learned the tools I needed to make it in this profession; hard work, dedication, and striving to keep things as simple as possible.

With my wings flapping, I jumped. I took my internship experience from USGBC and from my good friends at Greenlights, and aimed high. I had developed a pretty good skill set in online communications. I read blogs, tweeted, and began to understand the online landscape. With that experience, I felt it was time for more. I applied for a position at Edelman.

The first person I met at Edelman was Dave Levy. That is when I knew I was in the right place. Dave is a wealth of information, and he saw potential in me, and invited me to join Edelman’s internship program. I was extremely fortunate to become a part of a team that literally had awesome running through their veins. For as much as I learned in school, and in my two years of interning, I probably learned about twice that in the two months I interned at Edelman. That experience set me up for success; in October of this past year I was offered a full-time position,  working in Digital for Edelman.

All that has happened over the lifespan of this blog. And now, I can call myself a professional. As I have changed, so has this blog. It was once a sandbox for a college student to figure out the online space. Then it was an interactive resume for a graduate. And now, it is a sandbox once again. This time, however, it is the sandbox of a professional.

I often wonder what the new year will bring. What changes will I experience; what things will I learn. And so I leave with my one call to action: share. I want to learn about your experiences, and find out what you have learned.

Its time for me to catch my flight. I wish you safe travels and a happy new year.

Happo (Help a PR Pro Out Day) is a fun idea for me. I have seven more days till I am done with school and looking forward to the future. I have some job prospects in Washington D.C. and plan on moving there later this summer.

However prospects do not necessarily mean employment so I believe it is wise for me to participate in the #happo frenzy. In that light, here are some quick notes about me and where I see myself going:

  •  I am graduating from the University of Texas with a major in communication studies and a concentration in corporate communication.
  •  My strengths are in online communications; I have experience with website management , e-mail marketing, member/client management tools, communication plan development, and fostering social media conversations.
  • I have spent the last year interning for communication and pr departments of nonprofit organizations in Austin, Texas.
  • I am indeed in student debt but look to be debt free by the age of 28; thus my five-year plan heavily focuses on employment and gaining experience (however I reserve the right to re-assess my situation in two years to possibly consider grad-school).
  • I am active on Twitter and LinkedIn, I have my own blog and I know Google Analytics, and yes; I use it.
  • I am definitely willing to travel, do admin work, work long hours, and whatever else is brought upon me (No, I do not expect the corner office like some Millennials do).
  • Job seeking is fun to me; I find the experience valuable to me as I grow. If you don’t have a job opening I still would love to have an interview with you; even just a chat could be very enlightening.
  • In an entry-level job I look for two key things:
  1. The ability to question (tasks, methods, protocols, ideas, styles, rationale, etc.)
  2. The opportunity to work collaboratively (I want to work in the same room as you and others so that I can build and learn from your brains and be able to piggyback off of your great ideas).
  • My dream job:
    I walk into the office where I have a meeting discussing the company’s social media, websites, blog. I am in charge of monitoring the conversation in the company’s online presence. I utilize metrics and tracking to monitor that conversation, I communicate with key stakeholders and keep up with the trends going on with other professionals in the field. I network to broaden my horizon and knowledge, and have the flexibility to try some of the things my colleagues are discovering.

Thanks for listening and thanks for #happo. Cheers to all you employers and good luck to all you graduates.

Check out my resume if you get the chance!

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I am trying my best to understand Social Media and Online Strategy the best I possibly can. However I always seem to struggle with a few lessons that I know exist; but cannot find.

ROI:
Beyond tracking and reporting, how are online strategists demonstrating their return on investment? I want to know the best practices about Social Media ROI and who is the source of these best practices.

The Community Concept:
I understand the necessity to establish relationships with you stakeholders and prospective clients. However I do not understand how you develop constant staying power within each user. The online world is essentially a services mecca; people need their need fulfilled whether it be a need for entertainment, a need for consumption, or a need for knowledge. After your site has met that need they are looking for, they leave. How are companies making true communities beyond just their evangelists; getting users to return and interact beyond one or two experiences.

The Future:
I know what my beginner dilemmas are, but I want to know what questions are being asked in the social media community. I want to know what the key conversations are about and how others are trying to find answers.

When you read blog posts these days there are far more blogs full of “answers” than there are full of questions. That means that we rather already have the answers or that there are quite a few really good bullshitters out there. My beliefs lean towards the latter.

I have tried to copy the answer model I see everywhere in my own blog but am starting to realize that I am much better at asking questions.

We live in an era of information availability that is overwhelming. Never in the history of mankind has there been this many channels of communication available to human beings. Even more intriguing, there has never been a channel of communication quite like the Internet.

The Internet is capable of providing visual, auditory, and to a certain extent, sensory stimulus to people around the world. The amount of information available on one New York Times website is more data than has been seen by a person of the 1800’s in their lifetime. There have already been studies that show we cannot cognitively comprehend the extent of our Facebook network, so how can we even attempt to perceive the depth of information available on the Internet.

With that organizations have an obligation to the internet two-fold:
1. They must make their mark on this infinite array of information
2. They must understand that everyone else is doing the same thing

Must organizations are aware of this obligation that they must engage in but it seems as though they do not understand its worth. Many seem to think that by putting their mission and brand logo on Facebook, Twitter, and maybe LinkedIn that they will somehow reach an unknown number of new potential stakeholders.

Now I know companies aren’t really that naive, but that doesn’t excuse them for describing their digital presence as a “social media” department. Social media is a generic term turned celebrity. Entrepreneurial spirits see the potential, but cannot seem to look at it beyond traditional web terms.

The web is a pluralistic channel of communication which means it lends itself to many ways information can be received. Such a gift and curse has left many feeling overwhelmed by the entirety of what they would deem utilization. Integrated marketing is a great idea, but that doesn’t mean integration into to every microfiber of every channel of communication; its just overkill.

This is where people need to develop a plan for their web presence. Strategy starting at that broader scale allows you to see what works and focus efforts on realistic and far reaching manner. This is why the term social media is not effective anymore, because the buzzword can actually limit your presence on the web.

Start with budget and please do not end with something less than creativity. I ask the Fortune 500’s to use their millions to show what can be done so that the rest of know what they will be capable of.

So re brand your idea of web presence so that you don’t miss out on your own potential.

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