Ohio University ImPRessions

Ohio University ImPRessions

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Athens Boutiques Get Social With Their Media

November 6, 2014

By: Corina Rolko @corinarolko 

Athens is widely known for being home to Ohio University and its popular annual festivals, but many are finding that the gorgeous brick streets also boast modern and unique fashion boutiques. Uptown Athens has a wide array of shops, but a few have boosted their popularity through a strong social media presence.

kismetFigleaf Boutique, a women’s clothing store on North Court Street, has a fan base of almost 4,500 people who view their daily posts. The shop mixes media with photos, look books and simple sale announcements to entice customers to stop in and shop their regularly changing selection. To engage with customers, they also host giveaway contests on their Instagram, Facebook and Twitter – creating a fun and fashionable environment online.

Just up the street from Figleaf, Artifacts Gallery uses colorful graphics, enthusiastic tones and infuses humor into their social media. Their Facebook page has over 600 fans and their photo-driven approach engages customers and brings them into the story. They also have a Twitter account where they showcase photos and important sale information.

Screenshot_2014-11-06-14-28-54Kismet, a newcomer to the Athens fashion scene, is a women’s and men’s clothing, accessory and home goods boutique located on West Union Street. Kismet has taken off on social media with Facebook, Twitter, Tumblr and Instagram accounts that are constantly engaged with customers. Their Twitter page has a following of almost 500, and they consistently post links to their blog where readers can learn about the newest trends and see new pieces in the store. Their Instagram account shows pictures of pieces to draw in customers and promotes contests that give followers chances to win gift cards or unique items from the store. The different platforms could easily become overwhelming, but instead of posting the same information and photos, they work together to promote events and sales in different and innovative ways. For a sidewalk sale in April, their Facebook account ran an announcement in the morning, while their Twitter account posted a photo of the set up and the Instagram account posted a photo of new bracelets that were available for purchase.

In a town where the target market is college students attached to their smart phones, fashion boutiques have to be smart in using social media if they want a free and effective way to bring in new and returning customers. While the fashion selection in Athens continues to grow and expand, its certain that the social media presence of each business will become more and more important in marketing efforts.


Denny’s: PR Genius or Insanity

October 20, 2014 1 Comment

By: Amanda Moline @mandamoline

Face it: you’re addicted to Twitter. You follow everyone from TSwift to Stephen Colbert and that one girl from that one class you had a couple years ago. But you probably don’t follow Denny’s, and you definitely should.

Over the past several months, Denny’s has loosened up and narrowed their brand’s voice around goofy and often outrageous humor, aiming for a younger and more Internet savvy audience. The brand manages to combine humor with purpose by participating in trending hashtags, life-tweeting pop culture events such as award shows, and participating in various conversations that

American teens and young adults are having about music, celebrities and more. To prove that you should indeed take the plunge into syrupy social nonsense that is Denny’s twitter, here are seven times Denny’s won Twitter (and the Internet).

First off, as you start reading their tweets, you’ll wonder, “who the @$%# runs this account?”


Now, Denny’s loves their Top 40 hits, but they seem to have a strong love for Drake in particular. They even made their own emojis for him!





You can dance if you want to, Denny’s. You can leave those other restaurants behind.



And don’t worry – they paid their tribute to Queen Bey.



They make all sorts of references, like this ode to SpongeBob Squarepants.



They promote some really important causes.



They even had a 13-tweet long saga on National Coffee Day about a character ingeniously named Greg, who drinks so much coffee that he soars above the city: “using his super-caffeinated powers to thwart criminals and protect us from bono” where he apparently gets lost.



Denny’s has effectively joined the online conversation by leveling with their demographic, and setting the tone for other companies on Twitter. Their whimsical, teenage-minded approach on staying relevant sure does stick with you. At the end of the day, I believe that is what public relations is all about. You do you, Denny’s.

Is it Weird for a Potential Employer to Follow Me?

August 4, 2014

By: Amanda Moline @amandamoline

Picture that little (1) next to the PR lover’s favorite little bell, sounding a new Twitter notification. You rush to check who will now be updated with the glorious 140-character proverbs that are your daily Tweets, when you realize that the person you just recently interviewed with, your potential employer, is now following you on Twitter. So…is that weird?

You’ve used social media to connect with friends from classes, student orgs, or even people you’ve met online, but what about a potential employer? When used professionally and carefully, social media can be utilized to maintain connections and allow others to get to know you. If you’re considering interacting with a potential employer on Twitter or any other social media site, make sure to keep these tips in mind.

-Follow the company in general, rather than the specific employer, and follow them hard. If you’re truly interested in working for a company, it’s helpful to know about their culture and their online content.

-If you connect with anyone related to the company whatsoever, make sure your Twitter is Grandma-approved. This means not having anything on your pages that you’d be embarrassed having your Grandmother see. Keep it clean or it could cost you the job.

-Be sure to use your social media accounts to equally push out valuable information and connect with others. Of course it’s a great idea to share a relevant article that you feel your Twitter followers may enjoy as much as you did, but continuously being a “news feed” is bland and overdone. Create and share original content, especially if you have your own blog.

-Don’t thank your interviewer over Twitter, that’s just lame and lazy. Write them an actual thank you note or thank you email – it does wonders.

The verdict: as long as you keep it clean and have valuable interactions, it can actually be valuable to have your potential employer follow and interact with you.

#Trending on Social Platforms

July 18, 2014

By: Hannah Wheeless @tweetsonwheels

Jeeter Re2pect campaign is trending right now on Twitter

Jeeter Re2pect campaign is trending right now on Twitter

From flip phones to iPhones, G2G to BAE, and highwaisted shorts to- well back to high waisted shorts, the latest trend is something we’ve all strived to keep up with at some point in our lives. Trends tell us what’s new or popular so we can be a part of it.

By collecting the most mentioned topics, phrases and words in social media posts, different platforms can display them for all their users to see allowing the opportunity to engage with others in the online community.  With an opportunity like that, many social networks couldn’t pass up utilizing this trending concept.


Hashtags may be the first place your mind goes to when thinking of trends. The introduction of the hashtag on social media allows users to categorize their posts making popular or trending topics appear in a column on the newsfeed or home page. However, trends can be created with or without a hashtag. Using a specific word or phrase in a post categorizes it with any other users post that also includes that word or phrase. After enough users start chatting about that specific topic, it becomes a trending topic.



Hashtags and Twitter go together like bricks and Court Street. The categorizing of trends through hashtags allows users to instantly engage in conversations with fellow tweeters about anything from the Scandal finale to record breaking brick wall, Tim Howard.  This hashtag concept has quickly been adopted by other platforms including Facebook, Vine, Pinterest and Instagram. Searching a word or phrase in theses platforms will lead you to a page that compiles photos, status updates or posts with that same topic.


Instagram uses trends the same way as its fellow social media friends. However, because Instagram is limited to only sharing images, they only have the “explore” page that displays images based on accounts you follow, images you’ve liked, as well as popular trending images within your area and around the world.


Whether you’re on YouTube for some laughs from your favorite Jenna Marbles clip or to attempt learning the latest dance craze, Youtube keeps track of who’s watching what and how often. They find trending videos and display them on their home page, dividing them into categories from sports, cooking and music. You can also use a hashtag in the description of your uploaded videos to make them more easily found by others.


Reddit is a website constantly being updated with anything from breaking news to goofy memes. The entire website is organized by up and down votes, likes and dislikes. Therefore, the top post has the most upvotes or is the highest trending post, followed by the next highest trending post and so on. This system allows trending topics to be easily available as well as become interactive.

At the end of the day, any website or social media platform is looking to find the most talked about topics and make them available to its users. Hashtag or not, when something big happens in the world or even just in your own town, social media platforms are the perfect place to get the details and join in on the movement.




How to Connect With Someone You Don’t Know, but Want to

July 9, 2014

By: Sydney Gardner @sydneygardner

two tweets“It’s all about who you know.” It’s been said time and time again. To a PR student, connecting with professionals can often appear too intimidating to even try, but have no fear! Social media is a great way to connect with professionals in a less stressful environment! Taking a few easy steps will allow you to not only connect with someone you don’t’ know, but probably impress them along the way as well.

Know Their Work

Professionals may be flattered at you fan-girling over how pretty their office is, or who their clients are, but nothing shows your genuine interest better than knowing what they have done. Look up case studies, check out their blog and really read them! This not only gives you the chance to get a true idea of what type of work they do, but it also helps you see if this person is all you’ve cracked them up to be. By being able to discuss a person’s work with them, in and educated and informed manner, you show that you are truly interested in their career industry.

Interact With Them

So now that you have studied up on the person/company/brand that you love, it’s time to let them know. Social media is all about having real conversations so just remember to be yourself. I think one of the best ways to show them you like their work is to share their blog, tweets, etc. Networking on social media allows you to create a more casual environment to interact. Twitter is a great platform for starting conversations with professionals because you aren’t expected (or allowed) to write a lot. Just tell them, and your followers, why you like it. You may even get a reply or a follow from it! You can also comment on their work if you don’t want to share it. Be aware to not over do mentions and comments though! You want to show the person you admire what they do, not that you’re obsessed with them (even if you are).


Now that you’ve laid the foundation for connection, it’s time to take the plunge. I think connecting on LinkedIn is a great midway point between Twitter and email. I recommend connecting on LinkedIn within a few days of having a conversation on social media. Remember to always write an actual note on the invite, not the generic one given. Remind them of the conversation and let them know why you want to connect. Don’t be afraid of rejection. Most professionals will welcome connecting with an enthusiastic student with open arms.

Social media may not scream professionalism to some, but it can be great tool for you to reach out to people you want to connect with.  Social media has the unique ability to blend your personal life with your professional one, and that allows you to form genuine connections with people. When you interact with professionals on social media you are able to highlight you’re unique blend of personality and professionalism. So next time you are looking to network, turn to social media. You may be surprised at how successful you will be.

Finding Your Social Media Voice

June 17, 2014 3 Comments

By: Austin Ambrose @tex_ambrose7

caity weaverSocial media is almost no longer an option; working professionals need to have an online presence in today’s world. For journalists, especially those in public relations, it is vital to find your social media voice. There are many different factors that must be incorporated into shaping this voice.

The first factor being your company/organization’s standards. You should never completely adopt the voice that your company encourages you to use. It is important to know and understand the standards of the company, but you will come off as automated if you only use the voice that comes from their standards.

Another important consideration is a journalist’s ethics and professionalism. Know your ethics and know your boundaries. The threshold of too far is closer than you often think. When and doubt don’t send it out. Make sure you are not giving up your journalistic integrity by trying to relate too much with the audience. Being relatable comes in the next section: personality.

Having a personality is very important. You don’t want to be the corporate dud or the try hard. Let your voice emerge naturally. No one like the person who tweets three times every couple of hours. That is just annoying and bothersome. People also don’t like boring facts that will just make people skip over your post. Allow some of your personality shine through. Let your viewers know that you are a human being and have feelings. The only caution is to watch your professionalism. A balance of personality and professionalism does exist.

Finding that fine line takes practice. It won’t come to you over night. It’s like a science experiment – you have to keep testing new variables until the right combination appears. Don’t be afraid to experiment. Another helpful hint is to have personal social media and work ones (However, don’t have two accounts on one channel). This allows you to have more creative freedom on your personal account, while being more professional for work.

There is no one right answer for finding your social media voice. Nor is there one right method to finding it. The voice can often depend on the objective of the account, the type of company you work for, and what social media is being used. The most important part is finding a balance of interesting and informational – professional and personable.

If you are still having trouble finding your own voice through practice, the next best thing to do is research. Look up famous journalists and their social media presence. Part of writing is reading and mixing different styles to create your own. This technique would be just as usable for social media. Caity Weaver, a writer for Gawker—a New York City blog—has an excellent social media voice. She is witty and interesting, but still manages to incorporate her professional agenda from time to time. Finding your voice might mean combining many other voices. As long as the end result represents you, the journey is complete.

The Best Brands on Twitter

May 28, 2014 2 Comments

By: Morgan Brenner

When you’re on twitter, looking through your feed and trying to find something to brighten your day the last thing you want to see is an advertisement, right? Or can an advertisement be just that? Brands on social media have turned from just throwing information about themselves in your face into their own voice that can interact, help, inform and entertain. These are just of few of those brands that we can all take notes on.

Delta (@Delta)

However not charming airport security, babies crying on planes and being stuck in the middle seat is, Delta Airlines balances that out nicely with their witty and interactive Twitter account. As all brands should, Delta promotes their products with a look into their new luxury seating and announcements of sales to expensive over sea destinations. They have contests and prizes, they interact with accounts they sponsor and they even have puns. Delta is just the kind of upbeat airline you want to be flying with. And don’t forget to check out their other Twitter account @deltaassist for ways to handle any airline problem you may run into.


Charmin (@Charmin)

Toilet talk is not necessarily dinner conversation, but when you do it like Charmin does on their feed, you can’t go wrong. Charmin creates their own hashtags to start conversations on twitter and stay involved by retweeting or replying to others who use their hashtags. They also involve themselves with trending hashtags, but are not annoying. Charmin is pretty funny while keeping the bathroom humor to a G rating, even when they use ‘#tweetfromthetoilet.’

Hamburger Helper (@Helper)hamburger

Now this is one of my personal favorites. Hamburger helper is not only hilarious but also up to date with pop culture, and it shows on their twitter feed. They promote their meals but do it in clever ways such as replacing lyrics from “Fancy” by Iggy Azalea with “I’m so tasty” and many other dinner puns. When you talk about finding a voice on twitter for your brand, Hamburger Helper has done that perfectly. As for interacting on Twitter, they not only tweet at other accounts but follow some of the followers they interact with, which is not often done by largely popular twitter accounts.

Oreo’s (@Oreo)

Although Twitter is a social media website for words, Oreo’s has used its rather new picture preview feature to their advantage. Some sort of visual accompanies almost every tweet, whether it is their own advertisements, a new way to eat their cookies or Oreo art. They aren’t just pictures, there are videos as well as vines. When looking at a page full of words a picture will attract your eye faster than anything else. Oreo Cookie knows this and uses it to their advantage in a great way.

Twitter: Turning Annoyance into Engagement

May 23, 2014 2 Comments

By: Jess Carnprobst @jess_carnprobst

140516-socialskim-facebook-twitter-klout-studyThis question pops into everyone’s mind before hitting the “tweet” button: am I being annoying on Twitter? Is this tweet actually engaging? There is never a clear answer because everyone’s perspective is very different, but there are some general guidelines to follow for the next time you find yourself asking these questions.

Be mindful of what you share

I’m just going to get this one out of the way now. If you’re someone who continually complains on Twitter or shares needless details about your personal life, you may be seen as annoying. Of course, everything is fine in moderation. If you are continually getting a lot of unfollows, it might be time to change up your style.

Keep the retweets down

One general rule of thumb is not to retweet too many times a day. Instead of simply retweeting a bunch of tweets that you like, quote some tweets or if there is a link, tweet the link with your own statement or thought about it. This turns irrelevant content into engaging information that your followers will be more likely to enjoy.

Think of others

Think of others on your timeline. They don’t want to see 50 tweets about the same thing. Try to tweet about content that will be engaging to them, instead of something that only you find interesting. Along the same line, think of the people you are following. If you’re following people that have nothing to do with your interests and are not friends of yours, they may not be the best person to follow because they will most likely not be interested in what you have to say.

Help those who won’t be interested in your Twitter chat or conference

One thing I like to do if I know I am going to be tweeting a lot in a short time period (yes, I am referring to you National Conference) is tweet out the link that allows people to unfollow a hashtag. This way, they won’t have to see all of your tweets and you can still engage with everyone who will actually enjoy what you have to say. After all, we all know that the only time we will be off of Twitter at a conference or event is when our phones die.


Overall, don’t go rushing to change your style. No matter what you do, people are always going to unfollow you because you’re “annoying.” Some haters will never stop hating; it’s impossible to please everyone. Try to engage as many people as possible by posting original content with interesting information. Stay true to yourself and your character as you tweet. People enjoy seeing personality instead of a generated tweet. Keep it original and keep it engaging!

7 Tips & Tricks For Networking Trips

March 26, 2014 3 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.

#HideAndGoBus proves to be a success

March 5, 2014

GObusThroughout the last few months, our GoBus account has been hosting a promotional contest, in the hopes of increasing campus outreach as well as strengthening the relationship between client and customer.

The contest, titled #HideAndGoBus, gives students the opportunity to win a free round trip ticket on any GoBus route, simply by participating in social media.

But, how does one win? It’s quite simple, actually. Each week the associates of the account discuss where they would like to hide the prize, typically debating between popular campus locations. Once the location is decided, the account puts together the winning prize – a GoBus backpack with a congratulatory letter inside, which is then hidden somewhere on campus.

Now comes the fun part – participatory social media! The GoBus twitter account (@ridegobus) tweets out a picture with a clever caption as a hint to where to find the bag. For example, the caption for a previous event was: “Craving a salad from Shively? Lettuce give you a free ride home!” the prize was hidden in Shively Dining Hall.

Once a student finds the bag, the letter instructs them to tweet back a picture of the bag as well as the hashtag #HideAndGoBus. The voucher number is then sent to the winner via direct message. This method prevents students from just walking off with the prize, and encourages followers to participate on social media.

So far rides have been found in Ping Recreation Center, The Front Room coffee shop and Alden Library.

The contest has proved to be a huge success for the GoBus account. Not only has it given the associates real world experience in doing social media for a client, but it has also helped GoBus connect better with their riders. Sometimes, GoBus isn’t seen in the best light by students, but this contest helps the company to redeem themselves and gain more student approval.  It has also become quite an exciting thing on campus, based on the reactions from students.

Jack McCann, winner of the very first #HideAndGoBus contest, exclaimed, “Wait, is this real? I can just take this?” via twitter when coming across the prize. All of the backpacks have been found within the first 10 to 15 minutes of being tweeted.

As the Assistant Account Executive for GoBus, I am very proud of everything our account has been able to accomplish for our client through this project. I feel as though each member of the account, including the executives, have all gained something great from this campaign because we developed it from the very beginning.

One of the many things I love about Public Relations is the opportunity to see your creative ideas come to life. For us #HideAndGoBus started out as just a simple hashtag and has now developed into an actual participatory promotion, and not only that, but it has also been successful.

I cannot stress enough how much we as an account have to thank ImPRessions and GoBus for allowing us the experience to create and implement something like this. It has been an experience I know I will take with me throughout the remainder of my college career working with ImPRessions and beyond.

Megan Newton is a sophomore studying Strategic Communication and specializes in Anthropology and Visual Communication. You can follow her on Twitter at @_megannewton.


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