Ohio University ImPRessions

Ohio University ImPRessions

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Websites/Blogs to follow when preparing for your Internship

April 4, 2014 1 Comment

mashableNow that you’ve landed the internship – or are close to landing the internship – it is important that you are prepared for the few months of hard work that is approaching.  You can never fully know what to expect, but you can feel a little more comfortable and confident if you do your homework before your first day.

One of the best and most essential ways of preparing for your internship is to know your industry. Reading blogs, downloading apps, following certain Twitter accounts and keeping up on news are important responsibilities that you must follow through with, in order to be equipped for the job to represent your clients and your company. To help you prepare, I will cover a few major industries and news sources to follow to ensure that we are all prepared for our internships!

Technology

Wired (@WIRED

Wired is a magazine and online publication dedicated to technology and how it relates to the world around us. Whether it’s science, entertainment, design, business and more, Wired puts technology in simple terms and relates it to our every day encounters through articles and videos.

TechCrunch (@TechCrunch)

TechCrunch is a blog website focused on information technology companies, ranging in size from startups to established NASDAQ-100 firms. If you will be interning for a firm that works with startups, this site can give you vital information on other businesses and startups in the industry.

Mashable (@Mashable

While Mashable isn’t strictly a technology news source, I really like their tech articles. They revolve around the technology that we use every day, such as smartphones, tablets, websites and social media. They are short and sweet, which is perfect for us busy college students when we want the news.

Medical

Medical News Today (@mnt)

This site supplies all news related to the medical field including recent findings, studies and tests that have been completed. They also have ‘Cartoon Fridays’ on their Twitter account, so you can’t go wrong with this one.

Science Daily (@ScienceDaily)

Science Daily’s health and medicine section features research, news and videos relating to the medical field. Within this section are sub-sections Health and Medicine, Mind and Brain and Living and Well, so that you can narrow down news based on your interests.

Retail

Retailing Today (@RetailingToday)

Retailing Today has a news section dedicated to news stories revolving around the world’s top 100 retailers and their trading partners. From product news to news on CEO’s and company leaders, Retailing Today will give you the information you need to know about the retail industry.

Women’s Wear Daily (@womensweardaily)

Women’s Wear Daily covers news in regards to retail ranging from financial and legal news to retail forecasts. I also like this site because it covers retail news all over the world, rather than just the United States.

Now that you have a few sites and blogs to follow, you will be prepared for your internship no matter what industry your clients and company may fall under. It is always important to do your research and keep up on trends relating to your work. Hopefully you found this helpful and can follow a few new Twitter accounts!

Annie Beard is a junior studying Strategic Communications. You can follow her on Twitter at @annie_beard.

Thick Skin is In

April 2, 2014

thick skin

Yes, you heard me right. Thick skin is in. I would go so far as to say it’s the new black of Public Relations.

Recently, I stumbled upon blog post titled “10 Traits of Talented Public Relations Pros.” Ugh, I thought. Another cliché article how to be successful in the colossal world of PR. I glazed over the post with little enthusiasm until I reached number eight on the list. Suddenly, a nerve was struck.

“Have Thick Skin” was advice #8. I thought, this really should have been number one on the list,. Since my middle and high school years of playing competitive travel sports, coaches and mentors have loved to tell me to “have a thick skin” and be “mentally tough.” But what did mean? In high school, I had no clue. It wasn’t until college that I began to grasp this concept. As a young, aspiring public relations professional, these words of advice have become increasingly more important and relevant to my life.

Frankly, public relations is not for the faint hearted. The same goes for any work in journalism. Reporters get shot down all the time. People rudely refuse to answer questions or be interviewed. Writers get criticized for the things they write about. News broadcasters, especially women, are scrutinized for their hair, makeup and outfit choices. Campaigns aren’t always successful. Pitches could be a hit or miss.

Public relations professionals must be able to receive criticism. Critical feedback has no filer and it will come from a variety of people and sources. It can be biting and painful, but it’s inevitable. As much as I hate clichés, the old saying “If you can’t take the heat, get out of the kitchen” is rather appropriate advice. Yet, negative feedback doesn’t only have to be negative. It’s a way to reevaluate and improve your objective, making the end result more successful. If the only thing you heard was how awesome and wonderful you are all of the time, would there be any room for change or progression? Probably not.

I am 100% confident when I say that no human on planet earth is a stranger to criticism. I have been criticized for everything – from being an only child to having an Android phone before I bought an iPhone (which is just about the dumbest thing ever). I vehemently believe that it can only disable you if you let it. Allow yourself to learn and prosper from it instead.

On the flip side of the coin, PR professionals shouldn’t be afraid to be critical when necessary. If you sense a potential problem or issue, speak up! Communication is the core of public relations, and professionals are inherently strong communicators. Sharing your insights with colleagues and peers will lead them to respect you and view you as asset to the group. There is always room for improvement. Use your criticism wisely and effectively.

In short, wear your Thick Skin and wear it proud. Don’t forget to smile, too.

Morgan Borer is studying Strategic Communications with specializations in Retail Merchandising and Fashion Product Development. You can follow her on Twitter at @morganborer.

News Apps for the Person on the Go

March 31, 2014 2 Comments

newsIn the fast-paced life of a college journalism student, it is difficult to find the time to sit and watch the news or read the paper. But when you find yourself sitting in on an intelligent conversation about the newest bill in congress or a new crisis brewing, it is crucial to have some input. Once again we must dedicate this solution to the wonderful world of smartphones. What do you do? Download a news app. Browse the stories quickly in between classes, waiting for your coffee or right before bed. For the past month I have been using four different apps to keep up on the crisis in Ukraine, Malaysia flight 370, the Oscar Pistorius trial and other popular top stories. Each one is free and when you sign up it asks for preferences on what you prefer to read. After selecting as many categories you want, from fashion to food and from news to sports, it creates your home page. This is what I thought about each of them:

 

Flipboard

The easy task of “flipping” through articles of importance from reliable sources is what makes Flipboard my favorite news app. When I catch wind of a breaking news story, Flipboard is the first place I turn to for verification. With articles from NBC, Al-Jazeera, The New York Times, CNN, BBC and other top media outlets, I’ll read the story from multiple angles and in full detail. But, when there are no updates on those stories, I am entertained by my “Fashion” and “Celebrity” tabs. Certainly worth the download.

Pulse

Hands down, the most impressive feature of Pulse is the ease to which you can post specific articles to your LinkedIn Profile. Pulse is directly related to LinkedIn allowing you to browse your favorite magazine for stellar articles to post directly to your profile. I would highly suggest checking it out.

Zite

Once you select your preferred topics, Zite creates “Your Feed,”,which shows all of the articles similar to your interests. Unlike the other three apps, Zite’s sources are blogs, allowing users to see personal viewpoints on specific stories.

Circa

Sometimes I get rapped up in a breaking news story. Thanks to Circa, I have the ability to chose a story I want to follow and receive notifications every time new information is posted on that topic. Circa helps you to not miss out on story updates.

Sophia Ciancone is studying Journalism with a minor in Business and specialization in Sociology. You can follow her on Twitter at @Sophia_Ciancone.

Resume Trends: Dos and Don’ts

March 28, 2014

resumeeLooking through old pictures, I am in shock of how many butterfly clips I put in my hair in grade school. Okay, and middle school. Another 90s trend I wasn’t ready to let go of that my peers had thrown away.

Resume trends come and go just like the choker necklaces and layered polos we once held near and dear. Keeping in mind what trends will last can help you land the job (or internship) of your dreams. So grab your Lisa Frank notebook – here are some resume trends you should and shouldn’t follow.

DO.

Tailor your resume to the specific job. Let your potential employer know that you did some research on their company, as well as the position. This is especially important in a cover letter. Your experiences that are most applicable to the job should stand out, or at least be towards the top. For example, when applying to an internship focused on social media, highlighting the Twitter accounts you manage would be more important than working at a pizza place.

Don’t.

Use too many buzzwords. If the phrase “I am a hard worker” is on your resume, take it off. IMMEDIATELY. Save that for the interview when you can explain WHY you’re a hard worker. Sometimes buzzwords can be important – some companies electronically scan for specific words and sprinkle them lightly throughout. You also don’t want a ton of clichés on a resume. Words such as “led” or “built” can be good words that computers will pick up while also showing off your leadership roles.

Do.

Show specifics. Statements with action words about what a past experience entailed can be great, but hard numbers of what this experience accomplished can go a lot further. Being able to show how many placements a news release got or a percentage of increased followers will show them you’re an impact player.

Don’t.

Share your social media outlets if they’re not professional. This should be fairly obvious. If your last 10 tweets include any reference to the following: acting ratchet, twerking, the phrase “turn down for what?” or profane language, clean it up (or create a separate account) before adding it to a resume. However, if you tweet responsibly, a Twitter handle is a great addition to your contact information.

Do/ Don’t.

Color. It boils down to “Do #1,” tailoring your resume. When applying to a position where creativity is extremely valued, then adding color and a design can be a great trend to follow. Additionally, formatting your resume in a unique way (i.e. an eye-catching info graphic) can show off design skills. On the other end of the spectrum, if you’re sending your resume in hopes of working in politics, keep color to a minimum. Find a balance between being creative while maintaining professionalism.

Do.

Go the extra mile. Following up with the company after you send out a resume is a trend that never goes out of style. Little things such as connecting on LinkedIn, an email or even tweeting at someone can make your resume stand out. Better yet, picking up the phone or sending a hand-written Thank You note can leave a lasting impression. And aren’t good impressions what we’re all about?

Building a strong resume can take time, but it’s worth the time when you come away with something you can be proud of. While it can be important to stay on trend, the most essential aspect about creating a resume is incorporating your own style.

Devon Pine is a senior studying Journalism. You can follow her on Twitter at @LuckyNumbrDevon.

#ImPRessThePros Twitter Chat Recap

March 27, 2014 1 Comment

Last night we had our first #ImPRessTheProsTwitter chat hosted by former CEO, Devin Hughes and his adorable puppy Winston. The chat consisted of five questions, all relating to jobs/internships (with a small debate on Coke vs. Pepsi). There was a total of 39 contributors, including Scripps PRSSA Professional Advisor Zach Wright, Former CEO Heather Bartman and students from other firms. Overall, the twitter chat was a success! So check out favorite tweets and the stats from last night’s #ImPRessThePros chat.

ImPRessions Twitter Chat

devin

zw

 

dtweets3

tweets2

tweets1

 

cokevpepsi allison

 

devinwinston

zwpup

 

 

7 Tips & Tricks For Networking Trips

March 26, 2014 2 Comments

7 Tips & Tricks For Networking TripsWhether you’re traveling to a new city alone or with a school organization for a networking trip, interacting with professionals can always be intimidating for a college student on the job hunt.

Over the course of my professional experience, I’ve discovered how essential it is to plan for the worst before diving head first into the “working world.” That way, you’ll be completely prepared and the right mindset to give your best first impression. Here are the seven tips I’ve taken away for professional networking.

Research the Company Before Visiting

This is crucial before even setting up the trip. For starters, it’d be beneficial to research your PR point of contact, company history, brand standards and social media platforms before you do anything else. You’ll sound knowledgeable while interacting with the professionals at the company online and in person using solid talking points from your research.

Bring Your Resume/Business Cards

Bring several copies of your most updated resume to give to every professional you meet. Business cards are also great if you have them too. Being able to showcase your professional experience is important, especially when time is precious on a company tour.

Look The Professional Part

No sweats, no gym shoes and for goodness sake do not cake on the make-up. This is the time you look your sharpest. Shine your shoes, iron those dress pants and don’t forget to put on deodorant before walking through the front doors of the company you’re visiting. When in doubt, a blazer and dress pants, or black leggings are my go-to professional attire. I never wear heels, unless they are low or on a tall boot, but even then I bring flats in my bag, just in case blisters appear.

Hope For The Best, Prepare For The Worst

I always bring a purse with me on professional occasions carrying items for the most inopportune moments when you have coffee breath, your phone is on 2% battery, etc. These key items are:

  •       Altoid mints or gum
  •       Hand wash
  •       Perfume/Deodorant
  •       Cash
  •       Portable phone charger
  •       Band aids
  •       Dental floss

Tweet At The Company Before Visiting

True story: tweeting at MediaSource, a PR agency named 2013’s Best Health Care PR/Marketing Agency by communications industry powerhouse Ragan Communications, before touring their office in Columbus, Ohio with PRSSA earned me my very own MediaSource coffee mug and “swag bag”. It was really exciting being recognized in front of the whole group tour for using their hashtag #BobcatsBrandJournalized14 before visiting. It just goes to show you what doing your research can achieve: recognition before a face-to-face introduction.

Don’t Be Late

Arrive two hours early if you have to, butjust make sure you are not late. Just don’t do it. Period. (Rule of thumb is 5 minutes early is on time.)

Follow Up

Through email or LinkedIn, following up with a personal message is the perfect way to show your appreciation for their time and especially shows initiative for keeping the conversation going.Hand written thank you notes are an excellent personal touch too. Don’t stop there though. Keep the relationship consistent with an email every few weeks with a possible blog link you found interesting or info-graphic worth checking out.

 

Stephanie Gort is a senior studying Strategic Communications. You can follow her on Twitter at @StephGort.

Tips to Working Remotely

March 25, 2014 2 Comments

TipsToWorkingRemotely_Coffee

More people now see working remotely as a positive and rewarding way to complete work. A typical misconception is that employees will goof off without supervision. However, in my experiences I have found that working remotely increases productivity because it eliminates office distractions.

During the past two years, I had the opportunity to work for my father’s company, Yerecic Label, remotely from Athens. In this time, I have made many mistakes and learned how to work at my full potential remotely. Here are my six tips to being a great remote worker

  1.  Make sure you are passionate about your job. The key to being successful working remotely is to be self-motivated. If you aren’t passionate about your job and the work you are doing, it is a lot easier to shirk responsibility and goof off.
  2. Set and keep your hours. My first year working for Yerecic Label, I tried to fit my work in around my classes, clubs and other activities. Bad move. Most of the time I ended up doing my work when almost everyone was out of the office. This year, I have carved out set hours that I am working during key work hours. My co-workers know the best times to reach me and I am much more efficient.
  3. Minimize the amount of emails you send for approval and submissions. Managers get dozens and sometimes hundreds of emails each day making it tough to get a quick response or feedback. Combining your submissions or work will make your supervisors’ life easier and it will also help you get quick complete responses. Find your happy place to get work done. Find a place without distractions where you work best. Whether that’s a local coffee shop, library or your kitchen table, work in a place that is going to help you focus and avoid tempting distractions.
  4. Use technology for easy collaboration. There are so many great tools to utilize when working remotely to help group work. Some of my favorites include Google Docs, GoToMeeting, and Skype. Whatever tools you use, try to incorporate video since you can get more discussed in a 5 minute conversation than 20 emails.
  5. If you can, show your face in the office as much as possible. It is easy for your supervisor and co-workers to forget to include you in a relevant project or new company happenings when you aren’t in the office daily. No matter how responsive and connected you are remotely, you can’t replace face-to-face interaction. Some of the best insight and ideas come from simple conversations, so make it a point to get into the office to spark your creativity and connect with your employer!

TipsToWorkingRemotely_Growth

Remote work is growing in almost every industry. Working remotely has significant benefits such as a decreased commute time and increased flexibility. Implementing good work practices can help you to the path to success. What tips do you have in your experience from working remotely?

Kristin Yerecic is a senior studying strategic communications and minors in business and economics. You can follow her on Twitter at @yerecick

ImPRessions All-Firm Shirt on Sale until this Friday 3/28

March 24, 2014

Don’t forget to order your ImPRessions all-firm shirt! As of right now shirts are only $15 and the price will drop if more people sign up. To order a shirt, click here.

Remember this is fundraising for our organization. For each shirt purchased, we are earning $$$ for our great firm! You also don’t have to be a current member of ImPRessions (we know you Alumni want one), so please order because these shirts are pretty cool!

ImPRessionsTSHIRT

“Build a Brand. Shape Your Future.” AND buy your ImPRessions t-shirt.

If you have any questions, please email us at ouimpressions@gmail.com!

ImPRessions Internal Update

March 24, 2014

As the 2013-2014 school year is winding down, the ImPRessions administration is still in high gear! Here are some updates on upcoming events and recent happenings!

#ImPRessThePRos Twitter Chat

We’re excited to announce ImPRessions is hosting a job/internship themed Twitter chat on Wednesday, March 26 from 7- 8 p.m.

ImPRessions is inviting all current members to join administration in Scripps 114 for pizza while we chat! If you can’t make it to Scripps 114, feel free to join the convo from wherever.

We look forward to getting a great conversation flowing from our current members about how to stand out in the internship/job process. Additionally, we would love to hear from graduated firm members and other professional connections to provide us with your stellar insight and lessons learned.

Former ImPRessions CEO (and PRSSA favorite), Devin Hughes is hosting the #ImPRessThePros conversation. Get the inside scoop and don’t be afraid to ask the best way to snag an interview, stand out in your job/internship, make long term networking connections, etc!

PRSSA National Affiliation

ImPRessions administration is excited to announce that we have received notification that we are re-affiliated as a PRSSA Nationally Affiliated firm for three more years!! It is through all of the amazing associates and executives’ hard work that we are nationally recognized as a student-run public relations firm.

Thank you to all of our members for making this possible!

2014-2015 Executive Board Applications

If you are interested in being a member of the executive board for the 2014-2015 school year, be on the look out for an informational email within the next week or so. We will be taking applications for the following positions:

  • Creative Director
  • Human Resources Director
  • Internal Communications Director (formerly Finance Director)
  • Account Supervisor
  • Account Executive
  • Assistant Account Executive

Additional information on the position’s roles and responsibilities will be included when the applications are released. In the meantime, feel free to reach out to Dan, Kristin or Melaina with any questions about the positions.

Think Big, Get Results

March 21, 2014 1 Comment

It’s hard to stand out in the competitive world of PR and advertising. Yes, there are certainly safe, go-to marketing strategies that have stood the test of time. But to get real results, you have to get a little crazy. Throw caution to the wind! Color outside the lines! Think outside the box! Whichever cliché saying you prefer, the point is that the best PR practitioners don’t rely on tradition and the molds of conventional campaigns. Here are examples (in no particular order) of some adventurous campaigns, stunts, and ads.

  1. HBO’s True Blood: Revelation marketing campaign. This marketing campaign got True Blood’s already loyal fan base even more hyped about the show. The creative geniuses behind the campaign, Campfire (check them out!), sent vials of red liquid with labels in a “dead language” to horror bloggers. They created a “vampire-only” website called BloodCopy.com. They put up fake PSAs that promoted equal rights for vampires in major cities. This campaign piqued people’s interests and was a creative way to get people interested in the show.
    ELFYOSELF
  2. Office Max’s Elf Yourself. THESE WILL NEVER GET OLD. I’m fairly certain everyone has uploaded pictures of themselves and their friends into this 2006 interactive E-card invention. Over half a billion shares later, it’s a beloved tradition. When these start showing up on your Facebook feed, Christmas is near! Office Max found a fun way to get their name out there – over and over and over again. Creative partners: Jason Zada, EVB, and Maccabee Group.
    TACOBELL
  3. Taco Bell’s Twitter. First of all, let’s talk about Taco Bell’s Twitter.  One word: HILARIOUS! (They have an awesome presence on Instagram as well.) They know the importance of sharing pictures and interacting with their followers. They retweet and respond to their fans – sometimes celebrities, sometimes run-of-the-mill chalupa lovers – and just seem like a cool 20-something who happens to be a Mexican fast food chain. Their strongest customer demographic, the 18-34 age group, loves the casual-cool persona that Taco Bell has created. Just ask their 1.09 million followers.
  4. Taco Bell’s Mir Space Station Promotion. Ok, so Taco Bell is kind of a 2-for-1 in this list. In March 2001, Taco Bell held a promotion to coincide with the re-entry of the Mir space station. They put a huge target in the middle of the Pacific Ocean, and announced that if the target was hit by a falling piece of Mir that every person in the United States would win a free Taco Bell taco. They bought a hefty insurance policy for this stunt, but alas, no piece struck the target. The point is that they got people excited! AND a lot of media attention. Good job, Taco Bell!
  5. Athens Bicycle’s Gravel Rouser. Every year since 2004,Athens Bicycle hosts the Gravel Rouser, a four-day event of races and relays. The fun is that any one can win the 4 quirky events. It’s meant to be a light-hearted way to kick off the biking season. What started off as just an “Athens thing” now brings people to Atheathensbikens from all over Ohio. It includes a ride along a wooded path – hooked up with speakers blasting classic rock, a scavenger hunt around Athens, a donut party and a lot more. Athens Bicycle found a way to get their name and logo out there, gain some fans and increase business. By the way, it started yesterday!

These are just a few examples of businesses that weren’t afraid to get a little wild. Being bold pays off! It takes a lot of planning and creativity, but the next time you have a goal, take these businesses’ lead and think BIG (in the good way). Like Dr. Seuss said:

“why blend in when you were born to stand out?”

Elaine Carey is a junior studying Strategic Communications. You can follow her on Twitter at @snakesona_laine.

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