Internship alert! Inteva Products

Are you a sophomore or junior PR major still looking for an internship? Inteva Products, LLC, a Tier-1 global automotive supply company located in Troy, Mich., is currently seeking a full-time global marketing and communications intern. This is a paid internship and the intern would ideally work 5 hours/day, 5 days/week through the summer and school year. To fill out the application, click here. Additionally, you must send your resume to Danielle Leone.

 

Mindfulness 101: #5igns

By: Josie Bobeck

As a part of EMU’s Campaign to Change Direction, our Bateman team set up a mindfulness session presented by Counseling and Psychological Services. According to mindful.org, “Mindfulness is the basic human ability to be fully present, aware of where we are and what we’re doing, and not overly reactive or overwhelmed by what’s going on around us.” Being mindful can help with the sign changes in personality because it makes you aware of your surroundings and makes you become intentional of your actions.

During the mindfulness session, we ate a craisin. We observed it, smelled it, and spent a good amount of time ingesting a single morsel of dried fruit. But you know what? Never in my life before that moment would I have ever taken so much time to think about what I was really doing while doing something so simple.

Another exercise we practiced was listening to a piece of instrumental music and focusing our ears on one instrument in particular. Personally, it made me really think about what I was doing. I was focusing on the violin’s notes, the beat of the music, and the overall sound of the violin among the other instruments.

My main takeaway from the mindfulness session was just being more intentional of what I’m doing. What am I looking at while I’m walking? It’s focusing on my favorite part of my favorite song and actually paying attention to it, not just listening to it. It’s being present in the moment and taking it in for what it really is.

A major part of what EMU’s Campaign to Change Direction revolved around was one simple question: what are you hopeful for? The campaign may be over, but take a moment out of your day to think about what you’re hopeful for.

Josie Bobeck is a junior majoring in public relations with a minor in psychology. This is her first semester serving as vice president of member relations. She hopes to one day work in nonprofit PR. Josie enjoys spending time with her two dogs, her cat, and her family. Josie can be reached on Twitter @josephine3laine or via email.

 

 

 

Identity PR agency tour tomorrow!

Join EMU PRSSA for an agency tour at Identity PR on Friday, March 24 from 10 a.m. to noon. Identity is an award-winning integrated public relations firm driving strategic communications programs for a diverse portfolio of clients in Detroit, the state of Michigan and across the United States. Identity builds and deploys strategies that educate, create awareness, drive credibility and engage audiences—elevating company leaders to industry icons; transforming unknown organizations to household names; and opening uncharted markets to entirely new categories.

A carpool will be available, with a $5 gas contribution, departing from the EMU Student Center at 8:30 a.m. Please register accordingly.

*Paid members only. For more information, please contact Chapter Vice President of Professional Development Jordan Ross at jross40@emich.edu.

Please sign up using our Eventbrite. For more information about Identity PR, click here!

PRSSA graduation cords!

Graduation will be here before you know it! If you’re a PRSSA member who is graduating in April, graduation cords are currently for sale. Click here to purchase! The official color of PRSSA is navy blue.

Putting in the extra mile: What it’s worth

By: Nikki Mikolon

canva graphic

Photo created by Nikki Mikolon using Canva

Going to college is hard work. Many individuals going to college are not just going to college. They are working a job (or two), taking care of family, trying to have a social life, etc. There’s an endless list of things that students are doing. It’s rare to find the student who is solely going to school then coming home and doing homework. Sure, it’s a lot of work, but it’s worth it, right? The answer is ABSOLUTELY! As a commuter, I always questioned becoming part of an on-campus organization that would cause me to come to campus more than what was mandatory, as well as taking part in a highly demanding competition run by PRSSA. “The Bateman Case Study Competition is PRSSA’s premier national case study competition for public relations students, and gives you an opportunity to apply your classroom education and internship experiences to create and implement a full public relations campaign.”

This is my second year taking part in the Bateman competition. Here are some lessons I have learned from running and executing two campaigns through Bateman:

1. Research is NOT overrated.

This has to be one of the most popular statements in history when it comes to school and public relations, but it could not be more relevant. Crossing over from the classroom to running an actual campaign with my teams quickly reminded me that the same great idea we initially came up with was not always original. Most likely, there was someone else who had the same great idea, but they got to it first. Researching before planning is imperative. You should be researching the client, industry, target market and even taking a look at those great campaigns that shared similar ideas. Researching previous campaigns gives us the advantage to alter them, making the campaigns better and capitalizing on mistakes made and tactics that worked well.

2. Tactical vs. Strategic

The Bateman competition is a great way to see all sides of public relations and really how much work goes into each aspect of the job. Oftentimes in classes, while learning how to do public relations work and writing plans, we are too focused on that strategic aspect. Yes, this is important, and yes this can be extremely difficult at times. Bateman was a reminder of how important the tactical pieces of a plan are. The tactics are all the things we do to make the campaign run. For example, hosting an event, but don’t forget all the planning that goes into hosting the event, like who to contact, where to have it, how to advertise, who to invite, etc. These are multiple steps to hosting an event all tied into one tactic. Physically doing the tactics makes it clearer to tell the differences between the two crucial pieces of a plan: tactical vs. strategic.

3. Take credit for what you do.

Tim Wieland, PRSA Detroit president and EMU PRSSA’s professional advisor, met with the 2017 Bateman team to discuss what we have done and looked over the team’s plans book. When writing a plans book, people don’t know exactly what you have done and all the work you have put into it unless you tell them. When writing a plans book, it needs to be explicitly stated what you and your team have done to accomplish your goals because the steps you took to get to the end goal are just as important as the actual results in this case. This is the time for a team to show everything they have done and all the hard work it took to get there.

Working on the Bateman team was an unforgettable experience. Bateman is a place to test students’ abilities outside of the classroom and in an area in which they are in full control. Starting from scratch with an actual client is different than any other experience one can get while still enrolled in college. In class, we learn how to make a plans book, what to write in them and so on. At our internships, we are mostly doing the tactical pieces of the plan that those above us have already devised. We are removed from both phases of the planning and execution so we may not always see the connection. After my second year of doing the Bateman Case Study Competition, I finally had my light bulb moment. I experienced what it was like to see a public relations campaign from the true start to finish. I have never felt more prepared for the life that leads me after graduation. To say that I understand how to devise a plans books and actually execute and see everything that goes into it has been the most valuable experience I have ever been given in college.

Nikki Mikolon is a senior majoring in public relations and minoring in marketing. As a Detroit native, she hopes to spend her beginning years working for the city and being a part of its renaissance. Connect with Nikki on Twitter @nikkimikolon.

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Tower Inn Cafe dine & donate tomorrow!

tower-inn

6 reasons why Bitly should be in a PR pro’s tool set

By: Jordan Ross

bitly logo

Source: Bitly

Have you ever heard of Bitly? If not, I’ll give you a quick explanation of what it is. Bitly is a website with a simple premise: it is a URL shortener that takes longer, complicated web links and condenses them down into much more manageable links. So why is a tool like Bitly important for those in the PR industry to take note of? Well, much of what PR practitioners do nowadays takes place on the web. Whether it be creating blogs, running social media, or even contributing to online news centers and PR wires, there is a lot of interaction that PR pros do online. All these platforms are used to communicate with the public and provide them with information from the client or organization that we work for. To perform that task as best as we can, there are tools that allow us to have our message spread as clearly and effectively as possible, and Bitly is a tool that can do just that. Off the top of my head, I can think of six simple reasons why a tool like Bitly can be so beneficial for a PR professional:

1. Short

People have a lot going on in their lives, and the last thing they want to remember is a long website URL. If you want to raise awareness for whatever it is you are doing, the simpler you can make things for the average person the better. When people come across a huge website link with a bunch of random letters and numbers that stretch as far as the eye can see, it’s not really the most appealing thing. The shorter a link is, the easier it is to comprehend and understand. By providing shorter links for people, we are saving them precious time. Not to mention, it makes it much easier for them to remember and possibly go back to in the future.

social mouths

Source: SocialMouths

2. Mobile friendly.

Phones these days seem to be getting bigger and bigger, but no matter how large the screens get, there will always be a limited amount of screen space that users can interact with. There is only so much that can fit within the confinements of mobile device screens, and that means each pixel of real estate is important. Another thing to keep in mind is that while mobile phones are getting bigger, people’s attention spans are getting shorter. People want to get their information faster and get as much of it as they can within a given time period. If people are scrolling online and see a long link that they have to click out to, they may just scroll on to see what’s next because it’s too cumbersome to deal with. Bitly on the other hand, allows for the opportunity to take what could otherwise be a complicated link and make it concise and easier to digest. The simpler you makes things for people, the more likely you can get them to buy into what it is you are doing.

3. The ability to customize.

When you add a link to Bitly, you are given back a shortened link by default that typically contains a random string of letters and numbers. The great thing though, is that Bitly provides users with the option of fully customizing that last string of the link. Of course, some names may already be taken, but there are so many combinations that can be used. The ability to customize your Bitly link can allow you to make your shortened link align with whatever cause you are doing. Say for instance with this blog post, I could create the link “Bitly/PRSSABlog14March” and just by looking at the link alone you would get a sense of what the link is directing you to. You can get as creative as you want with customizing these link names, and it just opens the door to a wide array of possibilities.

4. Free

They say the best things in life are free, and I would have to agree with that statement. You might agree with me when you find out Bitly can be used without spending a single dime. Even without signing up for an account, you can take any link, no matter how long it is, and customize it. You can also sign up for a free account, where you can keep track of all the shortened Bitly links that you create. The more tools at a PR practitioner’s disposable, the more resources they have to do their job to the best of their ability. If there’s a free tool out there that can help you do your job better, why wouldn’t you at least give it a shot? You have nothing to lose, and only so much to gain.

There is an enterprise edition that can also be purchased. I’m sure Bitly makes the cost of that version worth it. However, from firsthand experience alone, I can vouch that the basic version you sign up for includes more than enough for the average PR practitioner to sink their teeth into.

5. Easy to use.

If you know how to copy and paste on a computer (if you are using a computer I hope you would know how to), then you know how to use Bitly. All you have to do is copy the link that you want to shorten, and paste it into the box that says “Create a Bit link.” After pasting the link, click create and that’s it. If you want to customize the string of the URL, you are given the option to customize right after the long link is entered. The longest part of the entire process is coming up with a custom URL, unless you want to just use the automatic link that is created for you. The choice is yours! You can always go back and change it, but you’ll want to keep that in mind before you send out the link for the general public to use. You can also create an account by using your email, or you can create one using either your Facebook or Twitter. It would make sense why people wouldn’t want to use a certain tool if it were complicated to use, but Bitly is far from being one of those tools.

analytics

Source: Bitly Blog

6. Analytics

Arguably one of the best reasons why anyone in PR should make Bitly an item in their tool set, is the fact that it provides you the ability to keep track of the links you have created. Not only can you check to see how many people are clicking on your links, but you can see how many people each day have clicked on the link, the relative location of those people, and even whether the click came from the web or any social media site the link was posted on. An important aspect of PR is being able to measure and evaluate your efforts. By doing so, you can see what efforts you need to improve. Without those results, you may not know what future steps you should take. In PR, there are many tactics that we use to achieve the objectives we set at hand. A very popular and easy tactic you can use is a website link to notify your potential audience. Analytics provide you with tangible evidence of the things you are setting out to accomplish, and Bitly allows you to make that process as simple as possible.

Jordan Ross is a senior at Eastern Michigan University majoring in public relations and minoring in communications. Jordan is in his first semester serving as the vice president of professional development for EMU’s Eleanor Wright Chapter of PRSSA. Jordan is also a member of EMU’s Honors College and serves as the president of the EMU Student Center Student Employee Advisory Committee. You can find Jordan on Twitter @_JJRoss