Monday, September 24, 2012


Comment #1 in response to :Correct Your Social Media Behavior, Now Please by Mimi Public Relations

Thanks for this great article!

Your message about a consistent message really resonated with me. I often visit company websites who list their social media accounts. Intrigued by the fact that they are utilizing Facebook, LinkedIn or Twitter, I decide to check them out. Unfortunately, I’ve come to realize that many companies are not staying ahead of the game, their Facebook page is quite bare, their content hasn’t been refreshed for months, and I find myself never visiting their page again.

Social media may not be what they consider a huge part of their business, but it can certainly impact consumers’ perceptions about their brand if they aren’t effectively using it. If there is a lack of relevant, interesting content on a company’s online profile, I am lead to believe that they aren’t interested in building a relationship with me as a consumer.

In today’s world, companies need to focus more of their efforts on public relations. The way we communicate and interact has completely changed. As you’ve stated, “We live and breathe the online world of constantly connected, no boundaries social media." Organizations must realize that consumers in 2012 aren't what they were 10 years ago.


Comment #2 in response to: The True Secret of Networking and Making Business Connections by Waxing UnLyrical

I thoroughly enjoyed your take on networking and making business connections.
I recently read that”70 percent of all jobs are found through networking.”  This is a reality I need to quickly get accustomed to if I expect to find a job upon graduation. Getting out there and meeting people at these types of event is crucial for a PR student such as myself.

I must admit that I find networking quite intimidating, I have a hard time “selling myself” to others. I’d love to meet a PR superstar who could share some of their tricks of the trade. My problem is finding the courage to approach them.

My personal goal for the year is to get out there and meet as many PR professionals as possible.

My first networking event was earlier this month with the Manitoba IABC. It was an extremely rewarding experience. I met the Communications Coordinator at the Université de Saint-Boniface and she gladly shared with me her perspective on their recent re-branding. It was fascinating! If I had decided to go home after work, I would have never made this connection.

For this reason, I can definitely agree that “the point is in the meetings. The point is in the people. The point is in connecting, reconnecting, and reveling in connection.”

Thanks Shonali!

Comment #3 in response to: After Sandy, lessons  emerge for corporate communicators by Michael Sebastian


Thanks for sharing some valuable tips after the Sandy disaster.

I find that public relations practitioners are always faced with new challenges and oftentimes they want to get the job done. However, shameless promotion in a time of crisis is never the right choice.

 As you state, peoples’ « emotions are running high » during a crisis. Catching news reporters and consumers when they are vulnerable may grab their attention but it certainly won’t impress them.

After all, as PR professionals, isn’t it our ultimate goal to build positive relationships with our publics? Why would a time of a crisis be a good time to pitch our nonessential news, or even worse, leverage the crisis to our advantage?  

Haven’t we learned our lessons from previous PR gaffes such as Kenneth Cole’s controversial tweet about the citizen uprising in Cairo?

It’s evident that PR newbies like me and even PR pros need to brush up on their crisis management skills from time to time.

Comment #4 in response to:Dating Advice for PR Pros by Jeremy Porter

What an interesting way of describing media relations to a public relations practitionner. Thanks Jeremy!

As a PR newbie, I thought your examples were relevant and I definetly agree that confidence and humour are just as important on a first date as they are during your first interaction with a journalist. Creating a lasting first impression is key to build a long-term relationship and it’s important that it be a positive impression.

I was also intrigued by your suggestion to have a friend set you up with a journalist. It seems simple but it could be quite effective for new public relations professionals who have zero relationships with the media

I never thought dating and media relations could be so similar. I am now convinced that I can use my dating expertise when I start building relationships with my local reporters.

Slackers need not apply

“It starts with, the RIGHT message and the RIGHT preparation.” — PRQ Plan

What I quickly learned was that public relations is not simply for individuals who love socializing. It may sound glamorous, fun and hip but it requires hard work and dedication. A public relations practitioner must be #plugged in to current events, conduct extensive research, monitor the media and craft timely responses  if they ever expect to run a successful PR campaign.

Prior to our class discussion, I didn’t realize how unpredictable public relations could truly be. Countless hours could be spent sending press releases, setting up interviews, planning events and preparing a press kit, but it could take months before it appears in the media.  Journalists can dictate if a PR campaign will succeed or fail in many cases. If a press release doesn't grab their attention, it could get lost in the shuffle.

One thing I know for sure, PR is not designed for slackers; it requires creativity, curiosity, intelligence, excellent writing skills and problem solving skills. There is #neveradullmoment.

Credit: PR Quote

Public relations is a vital part of any organization. When I think of  Canada’s favorite companies, I must say WestJet comes to mind, and I can also vouch for my  80-year old grandfather who rarely travels  yet refuses to fly with Air Canada. As one blogger puts it, “My overall flying with WestJet was a really great experience and should I be traveling to Canada again I wouldn't hesitate to fly with them again.” You can read more about her WestJet experience here. 

WestJet Airlines’ customer service, advertising and public relations departments create a seemingly flawless synergy. This definitely explains how they’ve become Canada’s third favorite company. Way to go WestJet!

Credit: PR Quote

Silence is never an option.

This piqued my interest because some companies would prefer staying silent rather than adding fuel to the fire. That being said, it is much better to release your side of story rather than allowing speculation in the media and blogosphere to run rampant. It only takes a few minutes for rumors to spiral out of control.

 In damage control situations, proper media training is definitely key. Senior management must be able to respond as quickly as possible and it     is a PR professional’s responsibility to ensure they are ready at a moment’s notice.  Acting fast is always the right solution!

As for what I’m hoping to learn from this class, I would have to say I’m quite interested in exploring how public relations can be measured. What would my clients like to hear? What measurement tools are used in the PR world?
Evidently, research is key when it comes to creating a successful PR campaign, but how does one define their publics?  As a public relations practitionner, stakeholders can range from employees to governments as opposed to a marketer who can define a specific market for their company. For example, Banana Republic can easily define their target audience to: men and women between the ages of 20-50 with an income level of $50,000 to $80,000 who have a professional  career.

Lastly, what type of messaging is most effective for a broader audience? What are the best practices for public relations?