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    Online observations of public relations, marketing, advertising and social media; the occasional frivolity; and The Rundown show notes. Jump in, the water's fine.

    Please Note: Everything posted on this blog is my personal opinion and does not necessarily represent the views of my employer or its constituents.

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Live Forward Podcast 12/15

I’ll be hosting Forward Podcast 37 “What Are You Doing to Address Globalization?” over at BlogTalkRadio on Saturday. We put out podcasts on the 1st and 15th so this month we’re doing a live show about globalization.

Show goes live at 7 p.m. GMT / 2 p.m. Eastern / 11 a.m. Pacific on the Forward Podcast Channel. Since it’s live, we’ll be taking your calls at US +1 (646) 716-9941.

Who: Richard Bailey, Robert French, Paull Young, Luke Armour and YOU.
What: Forward Podcast 37 Live
When: Saturday, December 15th 7 p.m. GMT / 2 p.m. Eastern / 11 a.m. Pacific
Where: Forward Podcast channel on BlogTalkRadio

Tentative topics of discussion:

  • Learning of languages
  • Work experience overseas and in minority communities
  • Issues like trade, aid, labor, climate change and religious fundamentalism
  • What are you reading and watching?
  • Whatever’s on YOUR mind

Join us live or catch the archive on the Forward Podcast Channel archive or through the Forward Podcast RSS feed.

Listen to the archive from BlogTalkRadio: 

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PR dissed by journalism – again

This is old news to many (April), but it just re-read it again on the Bulldog Reporter this week. It touched a nerve. Bob Zelnick, a former ABC news correspondent and head of BU's journalism department stepped down from his post because he recognizes his inadequacies as an administrator. Good on ya, man. It's good to recognize one's strengths and weaknesses. He will instead become a professor of national and international affairs. I admire that. What I found surprising is what he said when he left.

For example, the headline from the Bulldog: Boston University’s Outgoing Journalism Program Chairman Snubs Communications Dept.—Says PR/Advertising and Journalism Should Be “Adversaries,” Not Interdepartmental “Cousins” like, ouch, man.

Headline from the Boston Globe article: Debate roils BU department (By Sarah Schweitzer and Marcella Bombardieri) Well, at least you can tell which article came from a PR source 😉 The part of this article that I like best is the quote from Bob.

"Zelnick said the journalism program has become increasingly competitive with the best in the country, but 'we will never get a Grade A, first-rate, nationally recognized journalist to lead this department as long as it's linked' to mass communication."

It's funny he should say that. As a recent graduate, I've been thinking for years that communication studies have been held back by the placement of the departments in colleges or schools such as Journalism, Fine and Applied Arts, or Stuff No One Cares About in universities across the nation.

I just read Everett M. Rogers' book "History of Communication Study" and I at least now have an understanding of why things are that way in colleges today (you should read it if you like dry, lengthy historical books. Good info, though). But I agree with Zelnik, the departments could be separated, but I think for completely different reasons. Communication study has developed immensely in the last 40 years and deserves a home of its own. Students and communication fields would benefit greatly, especially PR. I applaud those universities and colleges across the world with stellar PR departments, but often students end up at schools they can afford or geographically get to – not often the best schools for all that learnin'.

Any thoughts or is this a tired subject? 

Social Media: Vitamins of the Web

Like getting enough vitamins or fiber in your daily diet, social media might actually be good for you. Things like blogging and podcasting, you say? Indeed. Let me show you some examples.

This report from The Boston Globe entitled "Blogs 'essential' to a good career" pretty much says it all. But, in typical Luke fashion, please allow me expound upon the self-evident. The articles lists several excellent reasons to blog, one of which is to help you launch your career by demonstrating your work-ethic and mental processes. If you don't believe me, check this out.

And, as you know, corporations can reap the benefits as well. Sure, we've been talking about this for a while, but here's a study that actually gives some empirical data. This study, pointed out to me by David Phillips on FIR (thank you), indicates that blogs have "relational strategies," such as conversational human voice and commitment. These strategies were found to correlate significantly with relational outcomes such as "trust, satisfaction, control mutuality, [and] commitment." Blogging can make your organization seem like Soylent Green, you know, made of people. It has worked wonders for Microsoft…

Podcasting, how does this fit in? Easy, for many of the same reasons as The Boston Globe article about blogging. Plus, listening to podcasts in their entirety could get you a two-minute self promotion spot on a major mash-up edition of influential industry-related podcasts. Chris, I listened to the FIR#131 and ATS #29 mash-up. Your promo was great, good luck.

And some new information about the web in general is always good. For instance, the Pew Internet & American Life Project released a study (abstract w/link to pdf) last week showed a gigantic increase in the influence the Internet has on our lives (hat tip). You don't have to tell me! Nearly half of my graduate education came from the Internet – by my own choice, of course. Some stats:

  • 50% in the number who said the internet played a major role as they pursued more training for their careers.
  • 43% in the number who said the internet played a major role when they looked for a new place to live.
  • 14% in the number who said the internet played a major role as they switched jobs.

In sum: Social media is good for you. The Internet continues to grow in popularity and usefulness. Eat your fruits and veggies. Any questions?

Back from Break & Burning to Blog

It’s amazing what a well deserved break can do for a person. And if you don’t think I deserved a break…well, then. So?

But now break is over, gone are the hours when I could sit by the pool. Gone are the long walks on the beach, sipping Margaritas, playing shuffleboard, and picking citrus fruit right from the tree when hunger strikes. Gone are the days of sleeping in. Back to reality, back to school, back to Ohio.

Back to some new and exciting news and good PR happenings.

First of all, I have been invited to join – as a principal contributor – the new Student and Pro PR Community called Forward, where I will be participating regularly on the blog. Forward is the brainchild of Auburn University Senior Erin Caldwall (you should check out the resume she posted on her PR blog – wow). Forward‘s main page reads:

Welcome to Forward — the online springboard for new and upcoming PR professionals.Our goal is to provide insight, answers and information to sharpen your perspective and help you go Forward in your career.

Here you’ll find:

  • commentary and advice from students, faculty and professionals from around the world from varying levels and areas of PR
  • information to help you find PR experience and how to make the most of it
  • the opportunity to learn about trends and tools that they don’t teach you in college
  • helpful interviews with professionals
  • a comprehensive list of suggested reading material including blogs, books and professional publications

I’m looking forward to contributing and learning from such a wealth of PR resources in this community. You can read my first post here. Thanks, Erin.

Next, I don’t know if I’ve mentioned it, but For Immediate Release: The Hobson & Holtz Report podcasters Shel Holtz and Neville Hobson have signed a book deal with McGraw/Hill to write a book on podcasting, which I am very anxious to read. I say this with authority because over break I read three books, two of which Shel Holtz wrote – and I was very pleased with all of them. One could say I loved them, but that would be weird.

Blogging for Business was the first book and PR on the Net was the second book, which is out of print, but every PR person should still find a copy to read. The last book I read was Naked Conversations, which helped solidify blogging in the public eye, in case you didn’t know. Also, while I’m on the subject, the For Immediate Release page has a paper I wrote available for download on Public Relations Autonomy. The author’s liked it, they critiqued it in Show #111, and posted it to their website. Thanks, gentlemen.

And that’s about it. Check out Forward and if you haven’t read the books mentioned above, please do so, as a PR student or professional you’ll find them invaluable.

PRSSA Portfolio and Resume Review

Our local PRSSA chapter held a portfolio and resume review meeting this week. Members of the local PRSA chapter came to help with student development. Stephanie Schuster, Akron PRSSA President, organized an educational and exciting event – despite the facilities not being properly prepared. Excellent work, Stephanie.

Personally I was a little disappointed in the student turnout, but I feel that those who did attend got some excellent exposure, advice, and networking. There were around 15 PR professionals there covering non-profit, agency, independent practitioner, and corporate organizations. I didn’t get a chance to talk to all of them, alas, as the craziness that I like to call “empirical research class” was bearing down upon me.

The three professionals I personally spoke with were outstanding. I’m finding out how interconnected this whole PR world is – two of the three individuals I had sessions with, either currently work or have worked with my old pal Clark for whom I did some freelance work for last year. Two of them! I was halfway through the review with Emily Sword of Smiley-Hanchulak before she mentioned something about working with a person I used to work with at Clark’s. I blurted out, “oh, you know Clark?” She replied that she worked with him up until she took her new job last December. She looked me in the eye and said, “PR around here is a small world.” Made me start wondering if I had said anything bad about Clark! Of course I didn’t! But it still made me wonder…
So the three individuals with whom I had sessions were:

I also had a chance to speak briefly with Marcus Miles of Goodwill Industries of Akron and, of course, Michael Gaffney, our PRSSA professional liaison from United Way of Summit County. These people giving up their free time to help students with their professional development is a wonderful expression. We should all be very grateful for what they have done. I know in that brief hour I learned a lot about me, PR, and my portfolio and resume. What else could I have wanted? Oh, yeah, there were cookies and coffee there, too – it was like a dream come true. The professionals couldn’t have been more helpful, and neither could Dr. Ritchey have been – he walked around with the cookie tray while we were chatting with our pros. Thanks to all professionals who offer their guidance and assistance – now, and in the future – to students and young PR pros as well.

Now let’s go out there and do what we can to get jobs so we can turn around and help other students.