Category Archives: Topic of the Week PRCA 3330

Multimedia Stories

  • I learned that the best multimedia stories are multi-dimensional. And use only high-quality audio. Except when it is really old recordings. I also learned to include photos. Photos can set a mood or introduce a story or section of a story and can be used individually. When using graphics use Flash to animate them. (If you have an IPad you cannot upload Flash! So you will not be able to upload these multi-medias.) Graphics can be the centerpiece of a story.
  • What surprised me was when it said to use text as a medium to fall back on when you are not sure what else to do. It even said to save text for what is left after you have put as much information as possible into other media.
  • I would like to know more about a storyboard. It would be nice to see some examples of storyboards. Maybe even phases of a storyboard in the process of creation would help. The Five Steps to MultiMedia Storytelling course was helpful though in learning the different aspects of a multimedia story. I personally love multimedia stories because they are different then the normal text story. It also appeals to a wide variety of crowd because the visual aspect is involved. I am a very visual learner, so having many forms of multimedia aspects in the story leads me to remember the story more and I can tell my friends about the story. This course was very informational on the different aspects and steps to take on writing or creating a multimedia story. It would be nice to see more examples in each of the steps that you learn about for multimedia stories. Maybe even a video example would be helpful and it would incorporate the aspect of the multimedia use.

(Topic of the Week 14)

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PR Open Mic Night

PRopenmic has so much to offer PR students and recent graduates. When I opened my homepage on PRopenmic I saw a post called Various Job & HR News/ Listings. This was very intersting to see/read because some of its content crossed publicize on Twitter and other PR trade publication websites. I also find it interesting that you can join different groups, I guess you would call it, according to your interest or needs. For example, there was a post on how PR practioners or students, any one for that matter, could joinPR Higher Ed Twibe. From what I can see, PRopenmic is an excellent way to keep in contact with students, teachers, and professionals. It is also a great source for jobs, current news and activities in the PR field and a way to voice your opinions/ thoughts on posts. The first time I learned about the hug from Taylor Swift commotion was from Michelle Blubaugh‘s blog. (By the way love the post!) I knew about the first, two challenges but did not know that she had already went to Auburn University and gave the two creative gentlemen a hug! I learned about the final hug happening here on  PR open mic. I also enjoy that on the side bar to the right they have a music section where you can listen to different social media radio casts.

Honestly I am not sure that I will stick with PR open mic. I feel as if I have so many social media connections already. But I am willing to give it a try. I can see how I would, as well as others would enjoy the options and variety that PR open mic has to offer. As I first go on to the home page of PR open mic I cant help but feel overwhelmed and disorganized. There is so much going on that learning how to navigate through the website might take some time. I feel though that once I learn how to navigate through the website I will be able to take advantage of what PR open mic has to offer and thus I will really enjoy this new form of social media.

(Topic of the Week 9 and 10)

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My Top 10! -Blogging Advice

Well since I am such an expert, not even close, I   am informing you on my  top 10 blogging advice for  new users. I was a new  user about four months  ago. I know how it feels  to be frustrated and lost.  Trust me, it gets better  and it gets EXCITING! So  here it goes, hold on, read  on, and enjoy!

  1. Keep up with the assigned posts each week! I know that it gets tough as the semester goes on, especially when you are taking 15 plus hours in a semester. But at least try to do as much as you can each week. If you don’t you will feel the wrath of procrastination!
  2. Use links, pictures, and videos in your posts to enhance the assignments. Of course you must have a link if you use information from a website or book, but having a video or picture as an example for an assignment draws in more interest and understanding.
  3. Try not to make grammatical errors. As I put this in my top 10 I know how hard it is to do! I’m sure I have plenty errors on my blog… I might even have one on this post! But the main idea is to not have obvious miss-spellings or dirty language. This detracts others from your blog. It can also degrade your credibility. So be careful!
  4. Get CREATIVE! I decided to try to add some interest to my blog by having a Picture of the Week, POW. I love photography! So I wanted to incorporate this into my blog. Even if others only come to your blog because of this creative element you have created, at least you are getting some traffic to your blog. It also makes your blog fun to work on.
  5. Use your all about me page as a way to connect to the readers. I found it very hard to write my all about me at the beginning. I had to revise it so that it said more than just three sentences. This part of your blog gives you a chance to tell others about your interest, goals, and gives a picture of who the voice is behind your posts.
  6. Comment! I know it is hard sometimes to write more than I agree, great post! But the more you blog the better you get at commenting. Write about what you liked about the post, ask questions if you have any, and describe your thoughts from reading the post.
  7. Network blog to blog. Blogging and looking at others blogs is a great way to see what others are doing in the PR field.
  8. Play around. At the beginning of my blog I had no clue on how to work wordpress. I had to play around with my blog so that I could learn how to incorporate hyperlinks, videos, and pictures. Be patient playing around will pay off! If this does not help you can ask one of your classmates. (This would be a great way to comment and network!)
  9. Have fun with PR connections! At first I was scared of the PR connections assignments. But after I did one I realized this is a great way to add personality and creativity to your blog. You get to pick the connection ideas and its all about what you think of the connections you pick.
  10. Super FUN! Once you get the hang of blogging, I think you will find it very rewarding. Sure you have assignments each week and they get tedious. The more you incorporate your creativity, the more fun you will have. Just remember to relax, and try to have fun. If you cant do this grit your teeth, suck it up, and get your blog done.  🙂

I am no way a blogging expert, but I hope these 10 advice tips helps you along the way. Just remember to relax and breath. Blogging can get frustrating but YOU CAN DO IT!

(Topic of the Week 16)

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Rocking the Social Media News Release

A social media news release is “a press release format designed for the online media world” (RealWire). Social media news releases or SMNR’s have not been around forever. Tom Foremski was the father of SMNR’s. Of course he had help but because Foremski’s rant of \”Die! Press release! Die! Die! Die!\” the SMNR was created.

SMNR’s are very different from regular press releases. SMNR’s use video, links, pictures and other media props to enhance the typical press release. SMNR’s would be perfect to use for a client that has a new product they are trying to launch. Having a video of how the product works, or a picture of the product can create a more visual connection. Also a link connecting the viewer to the clients website can provide more in-depth information.

Here are some do’s and dont’s when writing a SMNR (you can find all of this information below in Public Relations Writing and Media Techniques)

  • Do include links to pages where multiple instances of your key words/phrases reinforce your message
  • Do place terms in key positions like headlines and first paragraphs
  • Distribute a release through a service that carries hyperlinks to downstream sites such as Yahoo! Finance and AOL News.
  • DONT go link crazy! Too many links will confuse and draw focus away from key messaging.
  • DONT use low-resolution images. Opt for high-resolution multimedia that can be easily used by layout pros.
  • DONT use all tools, all the time. Focus first on the message. Use the bells and whistles to complement the campaign.

Anatomy of The Social Media Press Release PRSA International has great information on SMNR’s. It is a power point presentation filled with examples and dynamics of a SMNR a long with why SMNR’s are so important for public relations practitioners to use. Please, Please check this out! It is an incredible source of SMNR information.

I favor SMNR’s over the regular press release. I enjoy the visual aspects and the opportunity’s to click on links to further my interest in the topic. Just like infographs can provoke emotional appeal, I believe that SMNR’s can provoke the same emotions if not more.

(Topic of the Week 15)

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Information Graphics or Infographs

According to Lisa Angelettie, infographs are visual representations of info, data or knowledge.

Knowledge At Work provided reasons of what infographs aim to provide.

  • Infographics communicate facts and complex relationships; they portray figures and data clearly and are understood correctly at a glance.
  • Infographics are supposed to evoke emotions:  The images of an infographic can arouse enthusiasm, curiosity or fascination and thereby lead on to the text.
  • Infographics use symbols:  As the saying goes, a picture paints a thousand words.  Above all, the images of an infographic can specifically introduce the right symbols into discussion about the portrayal of controversial subjects.  These are – often unconsciously – taken on board by the readers.
  • Infographics are supposed to be aesthetically pleasing:  The layout of infographics contributes heavily to the image of a White Paper.  But in a different way to brochures and advertising material, there are normally no other “advertising laden” images.

Infographs can be useful in a story for your client because it can provoke the reader to want to read the text below the infograph, it can help the reader understand the information through the infographs easy images, and it can help advertise for the story.

If you can not create an infograph on your own here are two companies that can help you create one. Infographic World and Column Five.  Unfortunately I could not create an infograph on my own. But there are many examples out on the internet and plenty of companies that can help you create infographs, like the two I have listed above.

Personally I love to see infographs. I am a very visual person, having an infograph can provide me with the knowledge of what the text is trying to tell in a quick glance or even a quick interpretation of the infograph. The more creative the infograph the more circulation the infograph and the story can get. Social media uses infographs very frequently and google loves to use/ post infographs. Infographs also provide myself with an organizational flow. Because infographs are very visual informative, they must effectively flow the information. Here is an example of an infograph.

(Topic of the Week 11)

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Learning How to Write a Great Lead

  • Taking the NewsU The Lead Lab course really taught me some techniques on writing a lead paragraph. I know that I sometimes struggle with how long or too short of a lead. The lead lab suggests that it should be said in three breaths or 5o words long. Striving for fresh language and avoiding jargon is best.
  • Some of the information or tips surprised me while taking this course. But what I really want to write about is what I really liked about this course. The elements of effective lead writing section was incredibly helpful. Each of the who, what, when, where, how, why, and so what had great questions. I know that when I write a lead I sometimes get writers block on how to approach these subjects in a style that is lead appropriate. Some of the questions they had were: How did it happen? How does it work? How was the story revealed? Having these questions in front of you when your writing your lead can help brainstorm ideas.
  • I want to learn more about all of the myths. I really enjoyed this section. The myths section brought up techniques that I had not really thought about. Using quotes in the beginning of your lead, I am not sure that I have ever done this when writing a story but it is nice to know that I can. When the course talked about the myth of attribution, I found this very interesting. I can see how attribution especially in the lead part, when you need condensed information, can clutter the lead. I understand that myth three is to contain all of the information so that it does not leave the reading hanging. This idea of not being too short but not being to long is the technique I struggle most with.
  • Overall this course was very helpful and informational. Writing the perfect lead is challenging and will take practice. The more you write leads the more it will be easier to write them. I am taking a journalism class this semester and I know that I still need to work on writing a great lead to a story. It was nice though to have this course, and learn some great tips!

(Topic of the Week Eight)

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What is a Newsworthy Story?

TOW question: What makes a story newsworthy?

According to Ken Blake, Ph.D at Middle Tennessee State University, a newsworthy story must have at least one of these seven  characteristics: impact, timeliness, prominence, proximity, conflict, weirdness, and currency. Impact means the information in the story affects a lot of people. Timeliness is the information has happened recently. Prominence is when the story is about or involves a well-known person or organization. Proximity is the location of the information of the story. Conflict is when the story involves a disagreement between two or more people. Weirdness is a story that involves something unusual or strange. Currency is a story that is related to a general topic that people are already talking about.

Having your story newsworthy is important in public relations. If your clients story is not worth reading then your client will not benefit. It is important for the PR person to create newsworthy, exciting, and interesting stories for your client. These newsworthy stories can get the publicity and notoriety that your client needs. It is also important to catch the eye of editors and journalists so that your clients organization or new product gets picked up and reviewed. There are millions of stories out and about every day trying to be picked up for general news, if your story does not have a newsworthy focus it will not be published or get looked at more seriously. Following the seven above characteristics is a great start for writing your clients story.

Stephen Friedman from the Franco Public Relations Group wrote an article titled How To Make Your Company\’s Story More Newsworthy. In this article he explains what newsworthy is. Friedman says, “No news story can be assigned a “newsworthiness value” on its own. The newsworthiness of developments within your company depends on a number of factors: newsworthiness changes from day-to-day, is your story of interest to a local newspaper or a regional or even national audience, and is your story part of a trend?”

I am taking a Journalism class this semester, and finding newsworthy stories are really easy. There is always something happening that the public wants to know about. The hard part is writing the newsworthy topic in a way that the public can read and enjoy.

(Topic of the Week Six)

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