Blog Archives

The Power of the Hashtag

This may seem like common sense to some, but I recently discovered the power of the hashtag. I used to be somewhat skeptical about the hashtag. To me, it seemed like an unnecessary use of characters. You put # then a word to emphasize or reiterate what you already said in the copy of the post, and that seemed like too much.

After all, we learn in Public Relations, or really in any communication with the public, that we need to be concise and too the point. Only use as many characters as needed to get your message across.

I always got overwhelmed with the bombardment of hashtags some people would put on their posts, so I figured I would save others the onslaught and leave my posts simple and untagged. Well, that is, until recently.

I started a blog about a month ago. It was for personal use and to share with family and friends. My only follower was my mom, so yeah, it was a small blog.

On one of my more recent posts, I realized there was the option to tag your posts with keywords. I thought Why not? and put a few #keywords along with my post.

The next day, I checked my email, and I had a bunch of notifications from the blog site. People had found my post! They were interacting with it! I had likes, comments, and new followers. People searched the hashtags, stumbled upon my post, and actually liked what I was writing!

Since then, I’ve become a bit of a hashtag fanatic. Even tagging your post with one or two words can help increase visibility and make your messages more trackable. Don’t believe me? Try hashtagging one of your posts and see what happens! Or check out Tagboard or Hashtagify and search some hashtags you see trending on twitter.

We live in an age where there are thousands of people sending messages out into the digital world. Why not make yours a little easier to find by adding a few more characters including that little # above the 3 on your keyboard.

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Weekly Meeting Recap: Advice from the CEO of Golin

NEW WITH ROOM CHANGE! PRSSA - Fred Cook Flyer

Last Thursday, BUPRSSA welcomed Fred Cook, CEO of Golin, the award-winning global PR firm, to our weekly meeting. Cook gave an engaging and inspiring talk as he discussed his circuitous route into the public relations industry and shared advice from his book Improvise: Unconventional Career Advice from an Unlikely CEO. In case you missed the meeting, here are a few key points from Cook’s speech.

Being able to improvise is a necessary survival skill in the business world. Things are constantly changing – clients have new demands, campaigns shift focus, and crises hit without warning. Being able to improvise will help you adapt to these changes, tackle challenges, and will prove to be an invaluable skill at every step of your career.

You limit yourself by limiting your experiences. Expose yourself to new ideas every chance you get. The more experiences you have, the more ideas you have and the more prepared you will be to face dynamic challenges. Every other PR student looking for a job has the same degree and has the same words written on their resumes. What sets you apart and what will make you a valuable asset to a company are your unique experiences and the fresh perspectives you can bring to a situation.

Don’t be afraid to run with your ideas and don’t be afraid of to fail. Not every idea you have is going to be a winner but if you never act, you’ll never know which one might become your success story. Did one of your ideas not work out like you thought it would? Don’t be discouraged. Failure is not the end of the world, it’s an opportunity to learn and build courage.

Is All Publicity Good Publicity for the NFL?

nflThe NFL may be one of the largest non-profit organizations, but will it be able to survive the negative press that it receives? With recent understanding of the intensity of concussions that players suffer from, the NFL has received a large amount of backlash for its inability to inform the players and the public. While most viewers are likely to continue watching their favorite teams, people are still taking notice of the NFL’s significant blunders. Let’s take a look at some ways the NFL and other sports organizations can handle negative press:

1.    Accept the blame.

In order for the NFL to appear reliable once more, it is important that the it stop ignoring the elephant in the room and acknowledge the issues that are developing each day. Paying attention to concussions, drug abuse and other legal infractions can help restore faith in viewers.

2.    Be transparent.

Open communication is a key element of any successful organization, but in times of crisis it is essential. Creating a clear and honest statement will help emphasize the fundamentals of the affected entity and hopefully prevent future crises. If employees are trained in crisis communication and issues management, then the attitudes of and statements made by officials will benefit the NFL to a greater degree.

3.    Set an example.

In order to become a thought-leader in the industry, the NFL must implement new regulations to help prevent concussions as well as negative behavior from players. This will show the public that a change is occurring. The organization must go beyond making claims. The NFL must take action.

Until the NFL develops a game plan for handling of its current issues, the league will continue to suffer in terms of its reputation and following. By implementing these and other ideas, the organization is likely to recover and regain the trust of both players and fans.

PRAdvanced: 5 Things To Bring to Conference

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PRAdvanced: #FuelTheFuture is just around the corner.  In order to get the most out of this great networking and learning experience, you need to be prepared.  We’ve compiled a list of things you don’t want to forget on February 15th!

1. Your résumé.  Our career fair attendees include some of the best brands and PR agencies – this is the time to network.  Get names, business cards, and information about internship and job opportunities.

2. Business cards.  Have your own business cards already? You’re ahead of the game! This is the perfect opportunity to put those puppies to good use. If not, consider printing some up before conference with your contact information. It’s good to have a recruiters’ information, but it’s even better that they have yours.

3. Business casual attire. Dress your best to make a good impression. One of these professionals could be your future supervisor.

4. Questions. Expand your education beyond the classroom. This isn’t “Intro to PR,” this is real advice from professionals who are well versed in working in, and adapting to, the dynamic communication industry.  Prepare some questions ahead of time that you would like answers to about the industry – these are the people you’ll want to ask them to!

5. Your networking game. It’s not everyday you’ll likely have this many PR professionals and students in one room. Get contacts, make connections, and start building your network. These people could be your future bosses, and will be your future colleagues.

See you February 15th, and get ready to #FuelTheFuture!