Monday, March 31, 2008

PRSSA Alumni Visit PRSSA

Last Tuesday, 5 PRSSA alumni attended our meeting for an 'alumni panel' in which PRSSA members rotated in groups around the room and spoke to each alumna about their experiences graduating from Temple, and getting a job in the PR field. We discussed the difficulty in getting a job and that sometimes you may need to do 30-40 interviews before you find the right fit, but in the end, it is worth it. Here are what the 5 panelists had to say:

Julia Nietsch works as a PR associate at Abington Hospital. She says that she never really saw herself working at a hospital, but found that it was the right fit when she interviewed. She says that even though you may not consider a certain field for yourself, its good to be open-minded. She says that she has learned a lot about the medical world that she would otherwise have never cared to learn.

Meredith Avakian works as a Senior Public Affairs Representative at DuPont Co. She interviewed and was hired for her position before graduation and started working in July. She loves her position and writes a daily newsletter that gets distributed to all Dupont employees. She enjoys getting to interact with people from all over the world.

Jennifer Dublisky works as a Public Relations Account Coordinator at Barton Gilanelli & Associates. Her account specializes in RV sales, so she must read media outlets everyday, to keep fresh on what is happening in the RV world. Though she says this may not sound interesting, it has proven very rewarding.

Melissa Hersh is a travel consultant for Gil Travel. She specializes in group travel to Israel. She said that though this may not have been the field she initially wanted to be in, she enjoys her job and looks forward to where it might take her.

Kristin Zartman works as a consultant for CRA, Inc. where she goes into companies and helps them to work together to become better. She enjoys her job very much though she has only worked there a few months.

The panel proved to be very interesting and let PR students know that there is a world of jobs out there for them, they just need to know the right way to get their hands on them!

Friday, March 28, 2008

An Update on China’s Public Relations Campaign

You never know when you may stumble across an article dealing with public relations. It may even be when you’re keeping up with your daily news. While perusing, I found an article entitled “Monks protest upstages China’s PR tour.” Interested in the next phase of this continuing story, I read on.

As you all know, Beijing, China is host to the 2008 Summer Olympics. As mentioned earlier in the week, there has been a kink in China’s plan of making theirs the greatest Olympics ever. Lhasa, Tibet’s capital, has recently been experiencing pro-independence protests, starting out peacefully, but now moving to violent measures.

“The protests -- which began on the 49th anniversary of a failed Tibetan uprising -- have threatened to overshadow Beijing's hosting of the Summer Olympic Games in August,” states.

China’s PR professionals were hard at work trying to restore China’s image for the summer games.

“Beijing invited about two dozen international journalists to tour Tibet's capital, Lhasa, to show them the city is calm after recent anti-China protests.”

These same PR professionals had to use their crisis-management skills when they experienced a “public-relations roadblock” yesterday, March 27, during the tour. Thirty monks "’stormed into a briefing by a temple administrator to cause chaos.’" This protest is making news around the world; leaving some to wonder, is China as calm as they say?

Whether China’s public relations efforts will be effective is yet to be determined. The evaluation will occur this summer when Beijing opens their doors to visitors and competitors from all over the world

"Monks Protest Upstages China's PR Tour." CNN. 27 Mar. 2008. .

Thursday, March 27, 2008

Take advantage of the resources around you!

Every university, school or college has resources readily available for students to take advantage of.

At Temple University, students have access to countless useful and convenient tools, which can be very beneficial. Although the following are services offered at Temple University, if you attend another institution, other schools are likely to provide similar assistance. So find out and don’t be afraid ask for help!

Here are just a few of the resources at Temple University:

University Libraries:
As a student you have free access to Internet databases that would normally cost money to join otherwise. Through these databases you can find electronic books, full-texts, articles, journals, movies, reviews and more. The online card catalog also allows students to reserve, request, or renew books online as well. Another nifty feature is being able to ask a librarian a question online through instant messaging.

Writing Center:
The Writing Center is open to all University students, undergraduate or graduate, who seeks advice or help from tutors concerning papers, resumes, cover letters or other documents. The tutors work collaboratively with you to strengthen your writing. But be sure to plan in advance and make an appointment to ensure adequate time, try not to wait until the last minute! The Writing Center is located at Tuttleman Learning Center in Room 201 or you can call (215) 204-0702 for more information.

Computer Services/Technical Support:
The Help Desk at the Tech Center offers 24-hour technical support for Temple students. If you need assistance with computer-related issues or problems, (virus, spy-ware, regular maintenance and more) professionals try to help with all your needs. Services are available for walk-ins, call-ins, e-mail or online chat. Visit or call 215-204-8000 for more information.

Other resources include Alumni Affairs, Math and Sciences Resource Center, Student Health Services, Tuttleman Counseling Services and more.

Remember, sometimes we overlook the convenience that is offered and made readily available for us. So don’t forget to take advantage of the many resources at your school!

Wednesday, March 26, 2008

How to Google the RIGHT way

Most everybody loves using the Google search engine for looking up recipes, finding maps and looking up people's names to see if any juicy information comes up. However, some people do not feel that Google is a trustworthy search engine. Many professors do not want their students doing research because they may find false information. BUT...there is a smart way to use Google!

-Use Google Scholar, where you can find articles from reputable sources instead of something like Wikipedia, where anyone can contribute to an article.

-Google News opens you up to any news articles and anything that is currently in the news.

-Be smart about your searches. Try to narrow it down to the most specific thing you're looking for. For example, if you want contact information for a specific writer of a newspaper type in his/her name, the name of the newspaper and + contact information at the end.

-You will be surprised what you can find on Google, as long as you're smart about it!

Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Grad School or Full-Time?

We've almost made it to April.. graduation is just around the corner. If you're a senior, you're on the verge of A LOT of big decision.

One of those decisions is what happens after May 22. Grad school or a full-time job? How do you choose?

The only thing that's for sure here is that there's no right answer. PR people have been successful on both sides of the coin.

On the grad school side, you'll find yourself equipped with any of the knowledge that you didn't get in your undergraduate degree. When you leave there, you'll be able to apply your advanced knowledge immediately and be more prepared for the ups and downs of a full-time position. Also, many employers will start you off at a higher salary if you have an advanced degree under your belt.

On the full-time job side, you'll get something very important- experience. You'll get your hands dirty with real clients and be personally responsible for results. Employers really value experience in our business- they want to know what you've done and what you can do for them. You may not get the advanced pay, but you'll make up for it later as you advance in the ranks.

As a senior and an agency intern, my coin falls with the full-time job face-up. I want to get right in there and work- my internship has revealed the PR world to me and I don't want to miss out on its opportunities in grad school hibernation. But that's just me.

Everyone's got an opinion here- where do you fall?

Monday, March 24, 2008

PR Crisis for 2008 Olympic Games

PR extends far beyond what many people seem to believe. A lot of students think that PR is working for a company, working at a firm, or representing a celebrity, but there is a whole world of PR out there that many do not know about. International PR is one of these types of PR that does not get talked about quite as much as the others. International public relations will become increasingly important in the coming months as Beijing prepares for the 2008 Olympics. The Tibetan crisis is continuously getting more coverage in the U.S. media as the world questions whether China can host the Olympic games. Check out this article that describes the crisis and the problem it poses for the Olympics and the international community:


"China's communist leadership has faced a public relations disaster since protests of its rule turned violent March 14 in the Tibetan capital of Lhasa, sparking waves of unrest in surrounding provinces. China reported a death toll of 22 from the violence, but Tibet's exiled government says 80 Tibetans were killed. Nineteen died in subsequent violence in Gansu province, it said.
A rising chorus of international criticism and floated calls for a boycott have unnerved the Chinese leadership, which has turned up efforts to put its own version of the unrest before the international public."-from an AP report on

The Olympics has PR people who need to decide what to do about China's actions. What do you think the PR people for the Olympics think? However, China's PR people have a severely different idea of what to do.

Let us know what you think by clicking on the comment button!

Saturday, March 22, 2008

Tip of the Day

Important Steps in creating a flyer (or, flier):

1) Research the publics you want to convey your message to, and also the places where the flyer will reach the most people within the publics.

2) Brainstorm any piece of information that you may want your public to see about your event or promotion.

3) Discuss amongst the account team and the creative director the "feel" you want the flyer to have. Do you want it to be simple and clean? Or, do you want it to be bold and bright? Etc.

4) Most important step: As a PR practitioner, it is your responsibility to design the copy for the flyer. The creative can decide where to put the copy when designing the flyer, but it is vital that the copy is made by you, the PR practitioner. It is the PR practitioner's duty to convey a certain message to the public, so you need to control what the copy says.

5) After the draft of the flyer is done, edit it! It is important to leave time for this step. The flyer will go through many stages, and go back and forth between PR and creative. Don't worry though, you will eventually come to the perfect flyer!

6) Once you think the flyer is ready, and the firm and the creative have approved, take it to the client! The flyer will have your client's name on it, so they need to approve what their public is going to see. This is very important to do before printing and posting the flyer. The client may have slight changes or large changes. Changes can include the following and more: different color scheme, different pictures, copyright issues, added information, etc.

7) After the flyer has been approved by all parties, it is time to start printing. Black and white or color? Regular paper or glossy? What size? The list goes on. All of this information should be decided upon already, and is very dependent on the budget of the client.

8) Now, after you print it, post it! Make sure to post the flyer in targeted areas where your public is likely to see the message in as high of a volume as possible.

Thursday, March 20, 2008

Tip of the Day!

How Public Relations differs from the following…

Journalists provide information for mass audiences, and the general public. Public relation professionals tailor their messages to specific demographics, or psychological characteristics, in relation to interest, concerns and needs. Usually, journalists work with print or broadcast, whereas PR professionals use a variety of channels and combinations of media outlets, (i.e. newspapers, magazines, radio and television) and also through, pamphlets, posters, newsletters, special events and Internet tools.

Advertising is addressed to external audiences and is paid for! Space and time is purchased and the content on display is controlled. Part of the process of public relations is material must go through media gatekeepers, who ultimately make the decision whether to include the information as part of the news story or feature. Sometimes the information offered, through press releases or media kits are not always exactly portrayed the way it might have been intended to. However, advertising guarantees how audiences will be exposed to the message just as the client wants.

In marketing, the primary focus is concentrated on customers and the sale of products or services. In public relations the purpose is to build relationships and trust, while generating support for the organization. Public relations can, however, be a part of a marketing strategy. The two often coincide, in that they hope to raise awareness, inform, educate and give people a reason to invest and interest in the product or organization.

*Some information taken from
Public Relations: Strategies and Tactics
D. Wilcox, G. Cameron, P. Ault, W. Agee
8th Edition 2007

Wednesday, March 19, 2008

Tip of the Day

A very important thing that people in public relations need to be aware about is the AP Stylebook. Writing in AP style is key for public relations professionals. When you send out a press release to a newspaper and your story is not in AP style, they will get rid of it. They won't even consider publishing it in their papers. Here are a few tips:

-Go out and buy an AP Stylebook, or register for the online version.

-Always remember to be consistent when writing anything.

-Proofread your work for spelling, grammar and, most importantly, AP style.

-If you're unsure about the way you spelled something or anything, just check to book! It doesn't hurt to flip through the book and check it.

-Double check everything.

-Make sure there are not any errors. When you send your work off and it is inconsistent and has errors, it doesn't look professional at all.

Is PR toast in 2009?


We've all heard the word. We know it's not good. But do we really understand it's implications on the PR world?

The United States is clearly in an economic downturn, and service industries like PR will definitely be affected. Lay-offs in the industry have already been reported at large firms like Fleishman Hillard.

One of the top CEOs in the industry, Richard Edelman, addressed the topic on his blog on March 14, 2008. He says that PR is "better prepared this time around...[but] we still need to make a compelling case for PR in the face of looming budget cuts." We, as PR professionals, must promote PR itself and stand behind its many benefits. He offers these thoughts in his commentary:

1. The media has changed drastically. We need to be the experts on new media and original content to help clients maintain credibility.

2. PR is at an advantage over advertising. Nine out of ten people don't trust advertising, but they do buy and act based on recommendation. We need to take advantage of opinion leaders and social media to reach beyond traditional methods.

3. The industry is not just about consumers- it's about stakeholders, too. We need to make sure brand and corporate reputation support each other and look for responsible initiatives to maintain image.

4. PR educates. With complex scientific and political issues, we need to spread messages in ways that are simple and easy to understand.

5. PR is a catalyst. We need to use our campaigns to create public conversation and a continuous feedback loop between the client and the audience.

In my opinion, here's the bottom line: PR professionals must see the industry just like they see their clients. We need to spread our message: that PR is beneficial and necessary in the business world, recession or not.

Monday, March 17, 2008

Tip of the Day

Something that many PR students don't know is that there is a whole world of PR information and communities on the internet. You can become a more experienced and well-rounded PR student by becoming familiar with the different blogs, websites, and social networking programs that are available to you. Here are just a few:
This website is a blog written by a PR professional. The best part about this blog, is that other PR professionals leave comments on postings, so a viewer can get all different perspectives by reading one blog.

The Official Facebook PR Group
We all have facebook so why not be professional while on the site? There are many Facebook groups for PR people. Join them and participate!
A PR professional's opinion on all things PR

While these blogs or sites may not seem useful at first glance, take a closer look at them, and bookmark them. Also, many of these sites feature something called a blog roll where they link to other great sites. Be sure to check them out, they may just come in handy!

Monday, March 10, 2008

Happy Spring Break!

PRowl Public Relations is on spring break! Daily PR tips will resume next week!

Saturday, March 8, 2008

Check us out!

PRowl Public Relations has been featured on

Click here to check out the article

Friday, March 7, 2008

Tip of the Day


Objectivity is one of the most important aspects of public relations. You are faced with hundreds of messages a day; messages on billboards, television, radio, magazines, etc. There is advertising, which is a direct message to the public, but it is subjective. The organization paid for the ad and they can say whatever they want on it, but a second opinion by an objective party will most likely not be included.

Public relations relies on media to receive our message, and publish our story because they believe it will be helpful and useful for their publics. Public relations may feed their organization's message, but it is up to an objective party, the media, to decide whether our message should be heard.

Because of this objectivity, we have a greater advantage. People read newspapers and mostly believe what they are told. People rely on news to inform them and teach them, and by our message being included, it will hopefully persuade and create an action within the public, objectively and respectfully.

Thursday, March 6, 2008

Tip of the Day

Today's tip is more of a "fun fact." This is a list of the top 10 PR firms in the country.

1. Burson-Marsteller
2. Fleishman-Hillard
3. Hill & Knowlton
4. BSMG Worldwide
5. Edelman Public Relations
6. Ketchum
7. Miller / Shandwick Technologies
8. Peter Novelli
9. WeberGroup
10. Alexander Ogilvy

**Information gathered from

Wednesday, March 5, 2008

Submit Nominations!

Tip of the Day

The importance of reaching out to specific media contacts…

When sending out news releases or media alerts, it is extremely important to send them to the right people!

Usually when covering an event, promoting a new product, or even making an announcement, there are certain target audiences you want to get the message to. For example, if you were promoting a local fashion show, you would want to contact the fashion and style, entertainment or local sections of the newspaper. In which case, it would be best to send your news release to the editor in charge of that particular section. Also, be sure to address the editor or administrator by name, in your e-mail or addressed envelope.

One of the easiest ways to find specific contacts is with a media guide book. These books are usually published in relation to regional areas, and are usually updated each year. For Philadelphia, there is the “Greater Philadelphia Media Guide,” which includes an extensive list of media outlets. These outlets include daily and community newspapers; special interest and trade publications; ethnic and foreign language publications; college and university student newspapers; national publications produced locally; websites, wire services and news bureaus; cable TV shows; radio stations; television stations; and broadcast interview programs.

The Internet is yet another source that can be used to find the specific contact you might need to reach out to. Check the websites of magazines, newspapers and other medias, to find out the phone numbers, addresses or e-mails of the principal contact person.

Remember, sending your news release or media alert to the wrong person will not benefit you, so take the time and do a little research beforehand. Make sure the person you send your materials to is someone who has an interest in what you have to offer them.

*Some info taken from the Greater Philadelphia Media Guide 2006

Tuesday, March 4, 2008

Tip of the Day

Everyone knows that email communication is huge these days. So, though it seems simple and obvious: we must remember to proofread our emails.

When you're emailing in the business world, it's not just casual conversation. It's easy to type up a quick, conversational email without worrying about spelling, capitalization, punctuation or paragraphs. But don't fall into that trap!

Emails are still a form of written communication. Think about it- when you receive an email from a colleague (or even a friend, for that matter) that is full of errors, does it look professional to you? Does it look credible?

These emails look lazy, not well-crafted. Take the time to make your emails look presentable, even if you're writing to a friend. Don't let messy emails become a habit that will ruin your professional credibility.

*Some information taken from CornerBarPR Tips and Tricks

Monday, March 3, 2008

Tip of the Day

Many college students are planning on doing an internship in the summer. In order to get the internship, you must ace the interview! Here are some tips to show your potential employer that you're ready for an internship.

  • Before the interview even begins, RESEARCH the company. Why will the company want to hear what you can do for them, if you don't even know what they do? Use the internet to research the company and be prepared to mention something you learned while researching. Your potential employer will be impressed that you know something about them already.
  • Dress professionally. Show your potential employer that you are ready for the professional world by dressing the part. Sloppiness at an interview will only tell the company that you may be immature and not ready for the working world.
  • Firm Handshake. When you begin the interview, firmly shake the interviewer's hand while making eye contact.
  • Bring a portfolio! Don't come to the interview empty handed. Have a portfolio ready with some of your PR work, course work, and writing samples to show the potential employer. They will be impressed that you have taken the time to put all of your work together, and will get a chance to see what you have done.
  • Be enthusiastic about the job and what you want to do in the future. Employers want to see your enthusiasm because it says a lot about your personality and how you might interact with other employees and clients.
  • Write a Thank-You note. It's so simple to do, and shows the potential employer that you appreciated them taking time out of their day to speak to you. It will also help them remember you when they are deciding who to employ.