The Art of Blogging

For my last post I would like to say thank you Professor Schoenberg because this will probably not be my last post.  I am sure that this was your goal all along.

For my writing for public relations course I was required to complete 13 blog posts, and during the process of writing these posts I have discovered that there is a lot more to blogging than I thought.  Here are a few things that I’ve noticed about blogging:

1. It’s therapeutic.

Blogging is like talking to yourself, only better.  You have time to sit down and type out your thoughts.  While writing you have a chance to think about issues or topics more deeply and then express your thoughts more clearly, and be as articulate as you can.  You really have more time to think things through.  I wish I had that capacity when speaking in real time (It would stop me from saying things I shouldn’t).

2. You can make it what you want.

Take this list for example.  In a blog you can write lists, sonnets, or even one-liners (I don’t know if that would constitute a good blog per say, but I’ve definitely seen it happen).  There aren’t very many rules to your writing except those you make for yourself.  You’re definitely allowed to get as creative as you would like.

3. It lets you practice your writing skills.

And explore new writing styles.  For instance, a conversational writing style is rarely encouraged in college classrooms, but that doesn’t mean it’s not important.  I think it’s good to learn how to write how you speak, because in the long run it may even help you speak more eloquently, because again, you have a chance to sit down and really think about what you’re saying.  Along with that, I think it’s a good idea to practice good writing when keeping a blog, and I’m not just doing that because I’m earning a grade on these, but because there is a possibility that other people will actually read my blogs.

4.  It sparks conversations.

When I was first told that we were to keep a blog for my public relations class I was a bit skeptical.  A blog?  Why?  It’s not like anybody is actually going to read it, but the reality is that people do.  Whether they randomly land on your page or they are actively exploring a specific topic, chances are that random people from all over the world will read  your stuff.  I haven’t been blogging all that long, but I’ve already received responses from people that have stimulated my brain and really made me think.

In conclusion I would like to say that I am really glad that we were given this assignment.  I’ve enjoyed blogging more than I anticipated.  I am going through a time where I am trying to figure out if public relations is really what I want to do and it has been great to explore different topics within the public relations industry or in some cases familiarize myself with smart tools for public relations professionals.

Public relations is an industry based on good communication, and it’s no surprise that PR professionals are taking up blogging.  It’s a way to easily connect and communicate with other people, and build new skills that will help one become an even better communicator.


Social Media and the Cosmetics Industry

For the final project for my writing for public relations class, the awesome class that has me blogging, we are required to create a social media campaign.  In a previous post I touched on what a great tool social media can be, but how it doesn’t always work for everyone.  I am hoping that I chose the right product from the right company because I am determined to make my campaign a successful one (and hopefully get an A of course).

I have decided to produce a campaign for Meow Cosmetics, a boutique style mineral make-up company that nobody really knows about.  Beauty and cosmetics is an industry that I think could actually benefit from social media.  Social media provides a good basis for sharing, and I think consumers shopping in the cosmetics industry would benefit a great deal from sharing with each other.  For example, getting feedback from friends, or even complete strangers, about the right colors or shades from an online forum would probably be incredibly useful to them.

I have been thinking about the perfect social media tools for my campaign.  I think utilizing  YouTube would make sense.  YouTube makes it incredibly easy to upload a video and provide a visual basis for the consumer.  Additionally, I have been playing with the idea of creating a new social network based on my company’s website.  Don’t worry, I’m not trying to compete with Facebook.  I just want to build a helpful network that will keep consumers coming back.

I am thinking that it needs to include an area for thread-like activity so that consumers can exchange feedback, perhaps a color/shade comparison digital platform?  Maybe a cool game-like setup?  My mind is going wild right now.  I’m very excited about this campaign.  It involves the beauty and cosmetics industry which I actually have an interest in, and social media which at this point is an area where I can always use more practice (it’s what’s “in” afterall).

I have sketched out a few ideas but I think I could dig deeper.  I have finals this week, and I wish I had more time to dedicate to this campaign (I’ve had to produce a lot of campaigns this semester and this one is one of the fun ones).  Either way I’m excited to get to work.

If anyone has any cool ideas for a unique social media campaign in the cosmetics industry that will earn me a good grade in my public relations class, let me know. 🙂

Meow Cosmetics

Gen Yers have a chance!

Recently I have been hard at work on a marketing project for my internet marketing course.  We were having a discussion one day in class when we came to the realization that my generation does not have an icon.  It’s true.  Generations before us have had Bob Marley, Elvis, The Beetles, but we all don’t even like the same music so the chances of finding a common icon will be nearly impossible.  Good thing my marketing professor is set on changing that because for my final marketing project my group and I are in charge of creating a website that will bring my generation together in the hopes of finding a common icon.  As I compile research for this project I am coming across a few realizations of my own.  The best one so far; I think Gen Yers will make great public relations professionals.

First off, social media is taking over.  That’s why I am taking that marketing class as well as the PR class that has me writing these blogs, so that I can learn how to take advantage of the online tools around me and become more marketable.  With that, I am learning exactly how to use social media to create campaigns that work.  Social media doesn’t work for everyone and I am glad that I am getting that lesson now.

Social media includes tools like Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, etc. and my generation spends the majority of their time on these sites, which means that when I get out there and are asked to create a social media public relations campaign that generates results, I will be more than ready.  I have grown up with these tools and know them inside and out.

Secondly, I know I was asked to keep this blog for a couple reasons.  More importantly, so that I can improve my writing skills, have a portfolio-like space, and learn the ins and outs of, a tool that many PR professionals at large organizations are taking up.

Public relations professionals blog.  It’s part of keeping up with the social media trend, and now I feel more ready.  Today, I am spending my time online creating and learning from a social media site instead of stalking somebody on Facebook.

I found an interesting video on Gen Yers for your entertainment.  Check it out below.

The Wonderful World of Flickr…and PR

In this world of the social media obsessed there is no way that photos could stay behind, and they clearly didn’t as they now have their own social network on Flickr.  Flickr allows different people to post pictures based on a category (like cuisine, marriage, dogs, etc) or on a location, or based on different interest groups.  There are plenty of both expert and amateur photographers showing off their wonderful work for the world to see.  You can purchase a plan which will allow you to keep your pictures forever on the site and let you post an unlimited amount of photos and video but if you opt to not purchase the plan you still get the chance to show off 200 of your latest pictures and 2 videos per month.

There are many reasons to go Pro since you can do lots of stuff on Flickr.  You can edit pictures, create business cards, greeting cards, and calendars amongst other projects and it’s easy to upload pictures in several different ways, including straight from your email.  The main point however, is that just like any other social network it’s all about sharing and connecting.  Now how exactly does this fit in with PR?  Flickr allows companies to show their products or work to the world.

For instance if a company wants to generate attention before they even put out a product they can post pictures and get people excited.  This would work great with a company that makes visual products because it would be hard to show off an intangible good (although some may argue otherwise).  But if a company has a really great product Flickr can be a great visual platform that will help generate buzz.  The best part is that it won’t be too hard for people to find it as you can post pictures and easily link them to the product category so that the aficionados can easily find them and continue sharing with other people.

The world of social media is great, especially if  you know how to take advantage of it and Flickr is a great tool for companies to share their efforts without breaking the bank.