Patience and PR

Image

“I’m sorry to inform you that you have not been selected for this position.”

These words and I have met in my inbox countless times since the beginning of my courtship with public relations.  Advertising and public relations are the only majors that recommend at least three internships when applying for entry-level jobs.

I hate the word “Rejected.”  I can’t be alone because it is so frequently avoided in rejection letters.  It’s rough knowing that someone was better than you.

I’m going to assume that we’ve all applied for that internship and then gotten through the interview stage, nervously over-preparing for the interview, only to get a crushing email that someone has beaten you — at least that’s how I read it as I open the comfort food.

But the most frustrating part is the mother-type voices in your life: “Something better will come along” … “You wouldn’t have liked it anyway.” And it’s so hard to believe right there in that moment. 

It’s really similar to when you lose something, like your keys.  You can tear the house apart, but you’ll stay frustrated until you find them- without your keys you can never go anywhere.

Landing the perfect internship is your lost keys. You can’t stop searching for it until you get it — then you can continue to progress to your inevitable success.

So cast your net wide, and wait for the fish.

PRSSA, PRSA and PRCA have tabs on their national and state websites with collections of internship opportunities. Some large companies have websites dedicated to internship, like http://disneyinterns.com/, or dedicated tabs for job opportunities.   Target a company and explore their website navigation for opportunities. 

Photo Credit: Real Simple

Advertisements

New Year, New Resume

PRSSA Blog Submission

Image

The new semester has lurched into gear, with professors jumping back into assignments and students marking due dates.  Companies will also begin to post opening for jobs and internships that are crucial to your preparation for a career.  As you begin to consider your plans and apply for positions, take the time to update your resume.

A lot has happened since last fall and your resume should be a living document- always changing and evolving.  Here are a few tips to consider while making some changes:

  • Only include what relates to the job you are applying for.  Disney doesn’t care about those 3 years of “enthusiastic customer service and positive attitude” from Olive Garden.
  • Take a second look at phrasing to make sure you are describing your skills in the most clear and beneficial way. Some employers don’t know what PRSSA abbreviates.
  • Elaborate on your experience to best exhibit your skills.  Round out your skills by exemplifying different things from your different experiences.
  • Include references, teachers and mentors who can vouch for your abilities even if they have never formally employed you.  This can compensate for a lack in professional experience.
  • Deviate from a template.  Although they look appealing, they are TEMPLATES- adding your personal touch on a resume can help you stand out in a stack of applicants.
    *This can be a double edge sword, because you never want to distract from the content of your resume.  Readability and professionalism need to remain top priority.
  • Always include a cover letter.  A cover letter allows you to voice thing about yourself your resume cannot, like your personal goals and aspirations, reason for applying, or how you heard of/where recommended the job.
  • Perfect your personal brand.  Your cover letter and resume need to compliment and tell the employer why you stand out from other applicants.

Ready to take a look at that resume? It could be the difference in your next interview.

Sweet Tweets

As the holiday season continues, more posts about giving thanks and appreciation are popping up on the social media sphere.  People are posting and blogging about their favorite people, recipes, traditions, etc.  Twitter is allowing people to share their gratefulness for others on a public and convenient way.  Online shopping and delivery service allows you to avoid all of the holiday post office lines, cyber Monday deals allow an omission of Black Friday chaos, and even twitter allows you to send a short festive greeting without spending 3 hours on the phone with your extended family.

Check out some of these stories from an article from USA TODAY:

“Catharine McNally, 29; Alexandria, Va.; @cmcnally
I’m thankful for Twitter because … it helped me hear.

Accessibility analyst McNally is hearing impaired, so when she was given just 48 hours notice that she was invited to attend the first Twitter Town Hall at the White House last summer, she didn’t have time to request accommodations for her di

sability. When she found herself unable to hear clearly or read President Obama’s lips, McNally began to feel like a passive observer rather than an active participant in the event. She quickly realized, however, that Twitter might be able to come to her rescue. She typed in the Twitter hashtag “#townhall” and was able to see tweeted quotes from the president and the input of other people in the room. “If I missed something, I’d look back at the feed, and so in some ways, it became my personal captioning device,” she says.”

And

many have used twitter to stay connected with friends while recovering from a surgery or illness.  When I was 16, I had reconstructive jaw surgery and the recovery included 9 months with my jaw wired shut- so I (a teenager at the time) couldn’t be understood by anyone verbally for 9 months!  Twitter would have been SO helpful during my recovery to tell my friends and family what I was thinking and what I needed.

Let’s Talk About Food

Honestly, I wasn’t expecting to spend any of my Thanksgiving vacation on social media, much less blogging for a class assignment. Obviously, food would be on my mind as we spend the entire day cooking and eating, and REPEAT!  For this reason, lets focus on food bloggers.  Because before social media, the topic of food was reserved for newspaper columnists and coffee groups.

A careful niche of bloggers, the online food community is passionate about food and sharing their family secrets with the universe.  Basic components to a food blog are similar to any other type: archive, About, a sharing component, comment capability, and a professional layout.  An author must give their food a voice, and a look- a DSLR camera is recommended for pictures of the process.

Food blogging utilizes all of the strategies we’ve discussed in class- search engine optimization, landing page, promotion web on other social media networks, and give away promotion.  These blogs also offer a new twist on traditional recipes   They encourage creativity in the kitchen, to deviate from the norm and find a new taste.

Companies frequently have to do the same thing when trying to adapt to the new scene of social media.  They have to change their approach for a new audience. Often stretching themselves a little thin at first, social media takes a lot of commitment to be successful in engaging the target audience of a company.

Blogging offers cooks, and businesses, a new way to express themselves to readers.  It makes them available and relatable.

Clubs on Facebook

College organizations are very tactical when it comes to engaging their young actives.  They utilize social media because they know their target audience is on these sights more than any other website.

For example, I am active in the Crimson Tide Ballroom Dancers.  This is a club on campus that brings together students and adults of all ages to take part in an age old pass time.   Some dances dating back to the sixteenth century, ballroom dancing is a pass time that the majority of the student body is oblivious to.

But the club thrives on the web.  Starting on Facebook, the group creates events and invites member.  members in turn can invite new people and spread the word about the club – because when they RSVP the event shows up on their wall. The Ballroom club also has an e-newsletter.  Both of these mediums allow CTBD to communicate to their member easily and instantly.  Board members will post lesson cancellations and scheduling changes on social media at the moments notice.

This year the club expanded to a twitter and YouTube account.  The twitter is another way to reach students and remind them of upcoming events.  And the YouTube account serves to record exhibitions and special performances of students at dances.

There is an application of social media for every organization.  My group of my MC495 class had a Facebook group for our campaign.  Social media allows people to communicate on their own schedule. And as a college student, it makes it so much easier to juggle activities.

51 States of America

Yesterday the United States’ island territory Puerto Rico voted on whether to change their relations with the US.  The majority vote was to move to become the 51st state of the US, a huge financial and political statement for the territory.  Now Puerto Rico has a long journey through the United States government before it is accepted as a state, but the people will not be quiet about this idea.  Twitter and the blog-o-sphere are outlets for discussion as the topic continues to be stretched to rumors.

Just this morning while sitting in class, I heard someone say that Puerto Rico “is the 51st state of America!”  No question about it.  She even showed us a picture of the new flag! But upon later research, there are a few things my friend forgot to mention:
The Senate and House of Representatives BOTH need to approve Puerto Rico’s statehood with a 2/3rd majority vote.  And even if this were to happen other hurdles are present, like the unspoken expectation of Puerto Rico’s citizen’s to speak English (85% speak little to no English).

Most of the twitter nation is shocked and experiencing a bit of an identity crisis over the idea of the state count changing.

But other seem excited to accept the territory as a state.

What do you think? Are you excited for a new flag and a new state, with great beaches and a struggling unemployment average?  Or does the idea upset and appaul you? Will Congress even take up the issue for discussion?

Business Talk

As my group continues to develop a social media campaign for our “client” (class assignment), I’ve taken significant time this week to look into the business uses of social media.  Especially since LinkedIn updated their user profile layout this week (yay!), I thought I’d share some of the lessons I’ve learned.

 

LinkedIn is a great place to build your brand.  LinkedIn is an outlet for businesses to reach potential consumers (whether the consumer is another business or a person).  This website allows businesses to interact within their line of work and generate a relationship with other profiles, which can lead to referrals! You can test your newest advertising strategy or incentive in group discussions, and share updates on your company on the company page.

Facebook is also a powerful tool for businesses. You can build a relationship with users and give your business a personal flair without loosing any professional qualities.  This site is frequently less formal and involves more personal updates; individual employees can be active on this site as a person, not a business entity.

Twitter, in my opinion, is better for the larger and more established businesses.  Consumers active on twitter need short, frequent messages, frequently with short links that attach the longer story.  The real benefit of twitter is the B2B (business to business) networking, you can follow your partners and learn from what they are doing, even follow your competitors to stay up to date on their newest developments.

Social media is a changing platform, and keeping updated is a full time job.  If you don’t want to spend the money on advertising, you MUST spend the time on social media.