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Photo by   Ben White   on   Unsplash As we enter 2021, the world at large and corporate communications teams, in particular, find themselves at a significant turning point. What will be the “new normal?” Whether corporate communications is an opportunity area for your company or you are a Public Relations (PR) practitioner, there are several new ways for you to up your company’s game in the year to come. Here are my predictions for what to expect in 2021 and how to capitalize on the changes taking place: Corporate reputatio n   as a key success metric During this era of disruption and uncertainty, corporate values and brand activism have become ...
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The PRSA International Conference, ICON 2020, was a virtual gathering of some of the best PR, marketing, digital and corporate communications professionals from around the world. Held in October 2020, the event’s theme, “navigating a world disrupted,” gave attendees a chance to learn about how all types of market changes—from corporate crisis to pandemics to competitive pressures—can be opportunities for learning and advancement. Brandi Boatner, manager of Digital & Advocacy Communications at IBM, gave a history lesson on AI including where it started and how communicators can use it today in her session titled “Next Gen PR – Using Artificial Intelligence ...
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Photo by   Florian Klauer   on   Unsplash Content marketing and owned media are going through a renaissance these days, and not just because they can be done relatively effectively without a working media budget. As a result of the pandemic, many people   increased   their media consumption, according to a report by Nielsen. Intent-based, lower-funnel marketing is very competitive and pricey, with limited options. Social media is an efficient way to amplify good content. Search engine optimization might be the most efficient form of marketing for many brands. People are increasingly beginning and even entirely conducting their purchase process online, ...
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The PRSA International Conference, ICON 2020, was a virtual gathering of some of the best PR, marketing, digital and corporate communications professionals from around the world. Held in October 2020, the event’s theme, “navigating a world disrupted,” gave attendees a chance to learn about how all types of market changes—from corporate crisis to pandemics to competitive pressures—can be opportunities for learning and advancement. I had an opportunity to speak with Mark Murray, founder of M Squared Strategy, about his time at Microsoft while the organization was fighting back against anti-trust charges. The charges were initially logged against Microsoft in ...
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The PRSA International Conference, ICON 2020, was a virtual gathering of some of the best PR, marketing, digital and corporate communications professionals from around the world. Held in October 2020, the event’s theme, “navigating a world disrupted,” gave attendees a chance to learn about how all types of market changes—from corporate crisis to pandemics to competitive pressures—can be opportunities for learning and advancement. Dan Grech, the founder of BizHack Academy, lead a session that focused on the types of digital tools companies can use to target the right buyers online, as part of the ICON’s Technology Section Symposium. During his presentation, ...
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Brandi Boatner , Manager of Digital & Advocacy Communications at IBM, delivered her session “Next Gen PR – Using Artificial Intelligence for Communications” to close the Technology Symposium as part of PRSA ICON 2020 virtual conference. The 2021 Chair Elect of the Tech Section covered the concepts of Artificial Intelligence (AI), its role in PR, and she also explained how to build an AI newsroom chatbot to answer media questions.  The session started with an overview of AI history: Alan Turing asking his question “Can Machines Think?” in 1950, and the IBM Pavilion at the 1964 World’s Fair as an early incarnation of the industry’s and business’ drive to ...
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The Technology Symposium’s at PRSA's ICON 2020 virtual conference had session titled “Learning from Microsoft’s Anti-Trust Battles” with Mark Murray , Founder of M Squared Strategy and a former Microsoft corporate communications leader. In a Q&A with Amy Fisher, APR , Vice President of Padilla, Murray talked about what we need to consider when facing crisis like the Microsoft Anti-Trust cases. Tech Anti-Trust Now and Then Although there have been big changes since the “Microsoft Battles” occurred, Murray explained that we can find similarities with the industry’s regulatory issues nowadays. One big similarity that Murray mentioned: “The tech industry ...
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The Technology Symposium at PRSA’s ICON 2020 virtual conference featured Dan Grech, Founder and CEO of BizHack , with his session “Free Tools to Find Your Ideal Customer Online.” During his nearly 50-minute presentation, Grech applied the marketing concepts of audience segmentation and targeting to the digital realm. He showed how to use Facebook and Google’s free online tools to find the ideal customer (the kind who buys, tells friends, and comes back wanting more), to analyze product-market fit, and to attract new customers. Digital: the ideal medium to find your ideal customer According to Grech, audiences should be definable, findable, actionable, ...
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2020 has been a tough year for all of us including PR practitioners. We’re less than a month away from starting a new year. The new year would bring a new start, a new beginning as many would like to move on to 2021. This year was a challenging year for us all with the emergence of social unrest, political stress, and covid-19. That isn’t to say 2020 couldn’t be considered a success and you can actually go into 2021 with momentum and here’s why: 1. You’re Almost There. Our lives were changed forever in March 2020 when covid-19 became a worldwide pandemic. Just the fact that nine months later you’re alive and able to read this blog is ...
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As part of the PRSA International Conference, the Association Nonprofit Section held a symposium Oct. 29 with three sessions featuring firsthand insights from the COVID-19 pandemic. The presentations reinforce the common challenges and opportunities of being a nonprofit communicator or a PR practitioner who supports an association. Data-driven Story-telling During “ Fresh Solutions to Fighting Hunger: Navigating Food Assistance During a Pandemic ,” Zuani Villareal of Feeding America and Cathy Nestlen, APR, from the Regional Food Bank of Oklahoma , discussed how their organizations responded to the pandemic and the economic crisis that followed. ...
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2020 has changed the way we communicate to employees; structuring the content, cadence and cascade is more important than ever. Colleagues are burnt out and don’t want the mental anguish of starting work with 90+ emails before they even start their day. So, you need an empathetic and strategic employee communications plan to engage and inspire your workforce, which in turn will drive better productivity and business results.       In a Dynamic Signal Impact study, they noted 63% of employees are so frustrated by the way their company communicates with them that they're ready to quit. While many companies have scaled ...
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I write to you today on behalf of our Board of Ethics and Professional Standards (BEPS) Chair B.J. Whitman, APR, Fellow PRSA.   BJ submitted the resolution below to Garland Stansell, APR, Chair, PRSA, yesterday afternoon (11/9). After discussing this bylaw proposal with our BEPS board, we reached unanimous consent to draft a resolution recommending   "nay"   votes for the proposed bylaw amendment 20-05.  Please see the below resolution which outlines our position.  The proposed amendment, and others, are up for delegate votes at the virtual Leadership Assembly on December 5.  We hope you will give this BEPS resolution serious consideration and share ...
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2020 has been a long year for us all dealing with the emergence of covid-19 as a worldwide crisis. This includes PR practitioners who have been faced with ‘new normals’ that have included working from home and utilizing new technology like Zoom. One issue that shouldn’t be ignored is your mental health. Like covid-19, it doesn’t discriminate whom it can reach. Regardless of age, race, sex, and social status, it can get to anyone, including yourself. Mental health can not only affect you mentally; it can also impact you physically. Having a clear and focused mind can be key to get through your daily tasks. That’s why it’s important to take care ...
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The Tech Section is hosting 3 sessions as part of our first dedicated conference in recent memory, the PRSA Tech Symposium. You can participate of the sessions at no additional charge if you are in ICON 2020, or you can register separately (for a fee) if you aren't in ICON but want to catch these sessions:  ​ Free Tools to Find Your Ideal Customer Online October 29, 2020 2:30 p.m. – 3:20 p.m. With Dan Grech &  moi   Whether you work for a large consulting business or a consumer startup, as a Communications Professional you have an urgent need to understand and hyper-serve your target audience. Knowing how to find your audience ...
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Although The Association of American Medical Colleges (AAMC)in Washington, D.C., the non-profit organization established in 1876, recommends that a medical student needs at least 350 hours to prepare for the Medical College Admission Test (MCAT), we now live in such a hectic and demanding time that studying for several months may not be possible. Two Conditions Necessary to Study MCAT in a Month While it is theoretically possible to study for the MCAT in just a month, you must fully understand that this is a heroic task. Still, it’s possible to be successful if you can meet two conditions: The first condition is that you must already have a firm grasp ...
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It is never too late to be what you might have been. George Eliot Most professionals reinvent themselves at some point in their careers. The four independent public relations practitioners I spoke to recently are no exception. All four started out working for someone else as employees. As they remolded themselves as business owners, the learning didn't stop. Here are their stories about how professional development has helped them, both before and after going independent. But first, here are some introductions. Bernadette Adams Davis, APR , spent the first 20 years of her communications and public relations career in newspapers, an agency, and other ...
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The 2020 PRSA Independent Practitioners Alliance’s State of the Indie Profession survey is well underway which makes now a great time to review the 2019 results.  Registration is now open for the 2020 IPA Virtual Conference on Oct. 21 from 1 to 4 p.m. [Eastern].) This is the first of a two-part blog series highlighting JW’s 2019 findings in advance of his new survey results. The survey is anonymous and confidential and participation in 2019 jumped to 238, a 68% increase over 2018. Respondents included PRSA IPA, general membership, and SoloPR Pro. The 2019 survey came back with some results that survey my co-organizer and analyzer J.W. Arnold, APR, PRSA Fellow, ...
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I have spent the better part of the week reviewing changes that I want to make to our website. It’s time for a new site. It’s been over five years since our last redesign, and while we’ve kept the site fresh with news and blogs, technology has evolved, and so has consumer preference. I want our new design to be professional, easy to navigate, and engaging. And those, by the way, are the same goals we pitch to our clients. Being in the business doesn’t make the process easier. If anything, it makes it more difficult. Through the years, we have literally designed hundreds of websites and reviewed hundreds more in the process.  Each one has something unique, something ...
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Fasting has become a widespread practice since it possesses some health benefits. Fasting is whereby people abstain from consuming certain foods and drinks for a specific period. There are different ways of fasting. Some of the fasts can be performed for over 24 hours. As for intermittent fasting, it entails alternating the period of fasting and eating, ranging from one day to a few hours. Fasting harbors different health benefits , including: Fasting Promotes Blood Sugar Control Some studies have been carried out, and they showcase that fasting can help improve blood sugar control. If you are at risk of diabetes, you can consider ...
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Public relations is a high-stress occupation, and maintaining health and wellness as an independent practitioner can be especially challenging. On top of keeping up with emails, talking to collaborators and clients, and working long days to meet client deadlines, independent practitioners must also be concerned with marketing and growing their business. And on top of that, they need to fit in ways to maintain their health and wellbeing. I recently spoke with a few Public Relations Society of America (PRSA) Independent Practitioners Alliance (IPA) members— Jennifer Heinly, Jamie Meredith, and Mark Mohammadpour, APR— about how they tackle health and wellbeing ...
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