What I learned in Intro to PR

Image Credit: Joel Cocks via Compfight.

Image Credit: Joel Cocks via Compfight.

I have learned so many things about PR from taking this course that I haven’t learned about in any of my previous courses. What I have learned are things that can never be forgotten. Public Relations (PR) has so much dynamics to it that it’s hard to explain because it’s such a broad and open field. I have so much about LinkedIn, Twitter, and WordPress. I have especially learned how to brand myself online so people are interested in hiring me which also gives others an idea about me and my personality. I love that LinkedIn is a professional profile to build credibility. It’s a little like Facebook because people can comment and “like” your status which is great because people give me great feedback or an opinion about a topic I am interested in exploring.

I have learned about working in the media and how to handle myself during a crisis management situation. I have learned how to write an effective and professional press release, in addition to engaging in a Twitter chat which is something I have never done before so it was a little confusing at first, but then I became more comfortable in the chat when I finally understood what was going on.

I have learned more about the Enron Scandal since blogging about it on my post and how to interview a media professional. I have also learned about hash-tag fails, where a company uses a hash-tag to promote their brand or service to customers/audiences via Twitter and the opposite happens where they have to fix the situation, which is also interesting to me, not only because of the topic but because when I think of hash-tags, I think of positive things, but I never thought how a hash-tag can hurt a brand or company. I have learned how to write code of ethics which is a great idea at telling people who I am as a person and the rules I follow and apply to such as dignity, respect, loyalty. I have learned so much in my Intro to PR class that I will never forget which I know will be useful tools in my career field.

This entry was posted on November 9, 2013. 2 Comments

Larry Bird

Image Credit: Ryan Chu via Compfight.

Image Credit: Ryan Chu via Compfight.

Larry Bird, born Larry Joe Bird was born in West Baden Springs, Indiana, on December 7, 1956. Bird played for three outstanding years at Indiana State. He is a former professional basketball player, coach and current team president of the Indiana Pacers of the National Basketball Association (NBA).  Bird was drafted into the NBA by the Boston Celtics in 1978, and started at forward and power forward for thirteen seasons, along with center Robert Parish and forward Kevin McHale. Bird was a 12-time NBA All-Star and was named the league’s Most Valuable Player (MVP) three times. He played his entire professional career for Boston, winning three NBA championships and two NBA Finals MVP awards.

ISU honors Larry Bird: 

The Larry Bird Statue honors the lifetime achievements of Indiana State University’s alumnus Larry Bird. The statue began as an initiative of Indiana State University students. The idea began in 2006 when Brad Fenton, co founder of the Larry Legend Foundation saw the statue of Magic Johnson at Michigan State University. His desire to have a statue of Larry Bird on the ISU campus was to not only commemorate Bird’s legacy, and not only at the University, but also to the game of basketball.

The Larry Legend Foundation student group was created in 2009 with the goal of having a permanent recognition piece for Bird at Indiana State. The group’s fundraising efforts began with T-shirt sales on campus and at Sycamore basketball games with all proceeds going towards a Bird statue that would be taller than Magic Johnson’s. Their motivation and dedication inspired an ISU graduate to fund the statue in its entirety. Along with the statue, the students aimed to start a scholarship in Larry’s honor, the Larry Legend Scholarship Fund.

The Statue
The Larry Bird Statue will be dedicated on November 9, 2013. Standing 15 feet tall (three feet taller than Johnson’s statue), the statue will be housed on the south side of Hulman Center, Indiana State’s basketball arena.

Larry Bird doesn’t play around. He doesn’t soften expectations, doesn’t keep goals artificially low so he can say at season’s end, “See, we overachieved.”

Buffering an online crisis: Podcast

Image Credit: Colleen AF Venable via Compfight.

Image Credit: Colleen AF Venable via Compfight.

On Monday night, November 4, 2013, there was a podcast about buffering and social media which was hosted by Martin in Toronto and Jenny in Chicago. The talk about feature topic was over course of weekend, where users use buffer to send out post. Buffer was hacked on Saturday, November 2, 2013. Buffer being hacked is not a pleasant experience because it leads to a great amount of anger. Buffer’s crisis management worked well. Buffer put up post on their blog called “buffer has been hacked here’s what’s going on.” They said, “We will be posting updates and be steps to take to remove posting.” They apologized and provided an e-mail address for the public to share one on one questions. Buffer constantly updated the public at 1:00pm, 3:30pm, 5:00pm, and 8:00pm in addition to telling the public, the next steps they are taking. Buffer also updated their post at 3 pm on Sunday, November 3, 2013. There were 7 updates on Sunday constantly providing buffer information on Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn to the public. Buffer knew there was a problem, exercised transparency and told steps to avoiding problems from what would be a bad experience. Moreover, Buffer Gave tips for how to fix buffering problems but told the public they don’t have all the answers yet. Results were positive from the public. They communicated back so well. This is a great example of how crisis management should be done well. Buffer did a great job communicating with public. Others from inside the company said it may be an instinct form to naturally update the public when a system goes bad by communicating and going through the problems step by step. Buffer had incredible focus by telling the public what was going on as it was actually happening. 

Buffer’s effective crisis management steps:

– Buffer apologized and took responsibility early and often. They assumed a leadership role.
– They didn’t make excuses.
– They informed people about the situation with regular emails and posts.
– They spoke candidly about what happened, what they’re doing to correct things and what users needed to do.
– The communicated back to customers often, issuing ongoing updates and status alerts and using email, their blog, Facebook and Twitter.
– They were transparent.
– When things were fixed, they provided instructions about what to do to get reconnected.
– They continued to issue genuine apologies.
– They were focused, well-organized and first and foremost paid attention to the needs of their users.

Listening to PR podcasts can benefit PR students or new PR practitioners because podcast give great examples of what to professionally and how to handle a difficult situation in a professional and diligent way. It’s also good to have insight of ways to handle crisis management by keeping the public informed even if you, yourself are not fully sure why something is malfunctioning. Podcasts are a great way for people to learn from others experiences and apply those skills in a professional setting.

McDonald’s #Hashtag Gone Wrong

Image Credit: Siercon and Coral via CompFight.

Image Credit: Siercon and Coral via CompFight.

Do you think most organizations have been successful in using Twitter to promote their products/services or do you think Twitter could potentially be the demise of an organization if not properly utilized?

I think when organizations use Twitter; it can be a good thing because they are using social media to promote their brands and/or services. If the organization is a very popular and well-known place of establishment, people are not only following them, but also buying their products.

What organization/celebrity has become a victim of a hashtag fail and how did they recover?

McDonald’s used the hashtag, #MeetTheFarmers, as a planned strategy to promote the company’s guarantee of fresh produce and share stories about their farmers. However, a generic form of the hashtag began trending. The hashtag, #McDStories was immediately captured by Tweeters who started sharing horrific stories about the food in McDonalds. This was an extremely bad way to promote McDonald’s even though their intentions were good because people took the meaning of their message the wrong way, which actually hurt McDonald’s instead of helping to promote the company. McDonald’s recovered from this hashtag tragedy by pulling the promoted tweet. The hashtag gained steam and became a trending topic, and the story was picked up by dozens of online news sites, including Forbes.com. McDonalds would have been better sticking with the initial hashtag, which promoted their farmers rather than themselves, and which would not have left them open to so much negativity

Would you have done anything differently to recover or was it a good save?

I think McDonald’s used good strategies by immediately pulling the hashtag tweet. I would have also advised McDonald’s to also offer an apology to those who might have been mixed emotions about the tweet and those who shared horrific stories about the food. I would have advised McDonald’s the purpose they were trying convey to audience and that it is their sincere apology for the tweet hashtag that went horribly wrong.

This entry was posted on October 31, 2013. 3 Comments

Twitter Chat

Image Credit: Mark J P via Compfight.

Image Credit: Mark J P via Compfight.

On Sunday, October 27, 2013, I participated in my first Twitter Chat. It was a very interesting learning experience because I have never engaged in a Twitter Chat before, so I wasn’t sure if I had to download a file and use that to start a conversation with other people but I didn’t. It was so simple; all I had to do was post a comment and use the hashtag, #blogchat. What I learned from this experience was that there are people all over the world who are interested in PR, blogging and WordPress how I am. I also learned that people use social networking sites such as, LinkedIn and Twitter to brand themselves and it’s really cool because it gives others a better opportunity to see what kind of person you are, and interest.

What surprised me the most from the Twitter Chat was how many people blog, or are bloggers. There are millions of people who blog every day and I was surprised that you cannot have a successful career blogging. I believed that if people are following your blog, not only are you staying relevant in the world and media, but that blogging would generate revenue. It doesn’t! Bloggers should enjoy blogging as a hobby and passion of love, but do not quit your job! Very few people have successful careers blogging. In fact, one of the members from the chat group said it was a 0.00001% chance.

I would like to know more about staying relevant and updated within my blog. There are so many things going on in the world that it would be impossible not to talk about something, but I want people to follow me because they are interested in my topics. There are millions of blog sites people check daily, I would like to know more about competing with other blog competitors so that I don’t lose followers and people are checking my blogs daily.

Crisis Communication: Penn State

Image Credit: Javier Somoza via Compfight

Image Credit: Javier Somoza via Compfight

Since the story broke in November of 2011, the jury found Sandusky, a former Pennsylvania State University assistant football coach guilty on 45 of 48 charges. Sandusky faced hundreds of years in prison for molesting 10 boys over 15 years.

Head football coach for Penn State, Jerry Sandusky was charged with multiple counts of involuntary deviant sexual intercourse, corruption of minors, endangering the welfare of a child, indecent assault and unlawful contact with minors, as well as single counts of aggravated indecent assault and attempted indecent assault. Sandusky was arrested on charges that he preyed on boys he met through The Second Mile, a charity he founded for at-risk youths. He was even reportedly caught in the shower with a 10 year-old boy.

The story broke when the grand jury investigation was initiated in the spring of 2008 but had been kept quiet. In the summer of 2011, Kelly Burns, a recent Penn State MBA graduate.was told to remove photos of Sandusky from the Facebook page. The social media team was told to stop posting onto Facebook on November 5, 2011. On November 4, 2011 Sandusky was indicted and the next day he was arrested and charged and the story went worldwide instantly.

Below is a chronological look at the case against former Penn State assistant football coach Jerry Sandusky, based on a grand jury report in Pennsylvania state court. Sandusky has been charged with 40 criminal counts, accusing him of serial sex abuse of minors:

Jerry Sandusky’s allegations of sexual abuse

My thoughts: I believe this is a huge crisis for Penn State because they should have reported suspected child sexual abuse to the police. Penn State officials never made any attempt to identify the child that the grad assistant saw in the showers with Sandusky in 2002. Penn State officials should have issued a public apology to everyone, including the victims of the boys who were sexually assaulted. The Penn State community was angered and hurt by allegations of sexual abuse of children and stunned that coaches and officials failed to report it. There’s a question hanging over the Penn State football program, as to what did Joe Paterno know about allegations of sexual abuse against Jerry Sandusky and when did he know it?

This entry was posted on October 24, 2013. 2 Comments

NFL supports Breast Cancer Awareness Month

Image Credit: Jacinta lluch Valero via Compfight

Image Credit: Jacinta lluch Valero via Compfight

The National Football League (NFL) Players Association supports October’s National Breast Cancer Awareness Month with their fourth-annual national breast cancer screening initiative and fundraising campaign. In partnership with the American Cancer Society, the initiative, called “A Crucial Catch: Annual Screening Saves Lives,” reminds women 40 and older about the importance of having an annual mammogram.

This partnership has raised more than $3 million for the American Cancer Society, with the majority of the donation coming from the sale of pink items at retail and on NFL Auction. Beginning this year, money raised through A Crucial Catch will support the American Cancer Society’s Community Health Advocates National Grants for Empowerment (CHANGE) program. This program provides outreach and breast cancer screenings to women who need them.

NFL breast cancer awareness games features:

Game balls with pink ribbon decals used for every down and pink kicking tees

Pink equipment for players including: cleats, wristbands, gloves, sideline caps, helmet decals, captains’ patches, chin straps, shoe laces, skull caps, sideline towels, eye shield decals and quarterback towels.

Pink coins used for the coin toss.

Pink sideline caps for coaches and sideline personnel and pink ribbon pins for coaches and team executives.

Pink caps, wristbands, whistles and pins for game officials.

On-field pink ribbon stencils and A Crucial Catch wall banners.

Pink goal post padding in end zones.

Breast cancer awareness pompoms, shirts and wristbands for cheerleaders.

I think the NFL is doing a great job of supporting breast cancer awareness to people not only in their community, but all over the world. I especially love how the NFL has partnered with the American Cancer Society and other organizations in partnerships of raising donations to find a cure and also encouraging women to get annual mammograms. What I really feel is an effective method the NFL is using is their advertising technique by having team players and cheerleaders wear pink in support of breast  cancer.