Posts Tagged ‘Blogs’

The ‘You’ Brand: Planning and Executing Your Job Search (Pro-Am Day At Saint Louis University)

Tuesday, March 27th, 2012
I am proud to be PRSSA chapter professional advisor for Southeast Missouri State University (my alma mater). SEMO had a whopping 14 students (the most for any one school) in attendance, despite being nearly two hours away from St. Louis!

I am proud to be PRSSA chapter professional advisor for Southeast Missouri State University (my alma mater). Despite being nearly two hours away from St. Louis, SEMO had a whopping 14 students, the most for any one school, in attendance at the PRSA St. Louis chapter’s Pro-Am Day!


On Friday, March 23, 2012, I participated in the PRSA St. Louis chapter’s Pro-Am Day. PRSSA chapters and communications students were invited to join public relations practitioners for a special professional development and networking event. Students from nine different universities, spanning both sides of the Mississippi River, were represented.

In addition to industry section roundtables and resume reviews, the event featured keynote speaker Carrie Muehlemann from The Creative Group, a specialized staffing firm and division of Robert Half International. Muehlemann shared strategies for developing and sustaining a personal brand that grabs potential employers’ attention, as well as statistics to support how implementing these tactics can aid in your search.

To land a job in today’s competitive public relations industry, PR professionals must view themselves as “brands,” and ensure all of their job-search materials evoke a compelling and cohesive message. Muehlemann recommended approaching the job search with a “lean forward” attitude, exuding positivity, energy, and individuality. But, she cautioned to be authentic.

Thirty-nine percent of marketing executives surveyed said they would not respond to gimmicky tactics (e.g., Sending a shoe with a note that you want to get your foot in the door.) Instead, Muehlemann suggested that you write a creative brief on yourself, whittling it down to 5-10 core attributes. Also, set goals, write them down and map a path to get there. For example, attend at least one networking event per month and post at least one industry article per week on LinkedIn. Be sure to practice your elevator speech. She also advised that your business cards, resume, online portfolios, etc. should all match your “brand.”

Using Social Media to Create Your Personal Brand
As for social media, you don’t need to be everywhere.

  • Pick two or three platforms to focus on and keep them up-to-date.
  • Listen as much as you talk. Comment on industry blogs and actively participate. “Quality over quantity is key here,” Muehlemann stated.
  • Google yourself. Do the first page results represent who you are? If not, immediately begin doing digital damage control.

72 percent of advertising and marketing executives said they will “Google” an applicant and review his/her digital footprint, cites a February 2010 survey by The Creative Group.

Résumé Writing Tips
Muehlemann offered a few résumé writing tips:

  • Make your résumé easy to understand and follow.
  • Make it keyword rich, complete and thorough.
  • Include points that are relevant to the job, as well as ROI statements.
  • And above all, be sure your résumé is error free!

Résumé Follow Up Best Practices
What about after you’ve sent your résumé? Eighty-two percent of hiring executives surveyed said they DO want to hear from job candidates within the first two weeks of sending the résumé. Muehlemann suggested to first follow up via email. Include the job title in the email subject line, attach the résumé (again), and close with a call to action at the end of the message . If you have still not received a response, she suggested a phone call – but only after you’ve practiced your 30-second elevator speech ALOUD. Remember, be professional; there’s a line between assertive follow-up and harassment. 

Interview Tips
So, you’ve secured an interview. What should you do? Research the company (or clients that they represent, if it’s an agency) and the person(s) who will be conducting your interview and be ready with questions of your own. Also, when it comes time for the interview, be prepared to answer the standard questions:

  • Tell me about yourself.
  • Why do you want to work here?
  • Where do you see yourself in five years?
  • How did you overcome a difficult situation or issue?
  • What is your value / why should I hire you? *Be ready with ROI statements

Finally, what do you do when you don’t get the job. Don’t take it personally. Ask for constructive feedback, as well as other positions. And, don’t forget to thank them for their time.

What would you add? What have you found helpful in your job search? Please share our thoughts here, with me, and the BurrellesLuce Fresh Ideas readers.

Pinterest: The newest ‘pin thing’ in social media?

Friday, January 20th, 2012
Flickr Image: Nate Hofer

Flickr Image: Nate Hofer

Just in case you have been out of commission and haven’t heard of Pinterest, according to its About Page, “Pinterest lets you organize and share all the beautiful things you find on the web […] Browsing pinboards is a fun way to discover new things and get inspiration from people who share your interests.” 

The site was (soft) launched less than two years ago and is still by-invitation-only, but has exploded in popularity in the past few months. According to ZDNet, Pinterest received nearly 11 million total visits in the week ending December 1, 2011. That’s 4,000 percent growth on visits during a single week in just six months, points out CNET, bumping it into the top 10 social sites among the more than 6,000 properties that Hitwise tracks.

In fact, for the first time Pinterest made the new BurrellesLuce 2012 Top Media Outlets: Newspapers, Blogs, Consumer Magazines, Websites and Social Networks. The site comes in at number 9 on the top social networks (with 0.41 percent market share) according to Hitwise rankings for the week ending December 17, 2011 – beating out newcomer Google+ which rounds out the number 10 spot with 0.36 percent market share.

We all see cool stuff online that we’d like to share or save (aka “pin”) – I have some Facebook friends that I wish would use Pinterest instead of filling my stream with kitten images and quotation graphics, but that’s for another post. Snark aside, it is no surprise that people are finding use for this online pinboard. Friends and colleagues that are engaged are pinning wedding themed items, foodie friends are pinning recipes, fashion junkies are pinning wish-list items, etc.

So, I get the individual use, but what, if anything, can this do for companies or organizations? (more…)

BurrellesLuce Releases New 2012 Top Media List: Top U.S. Websites Also Dominate Global Standings

Friday, January 6th, 2012

BurrellesLuce 2012 Top Media OutetsLIVINGSTON, NJ (January 6, 2012)—Google, Facebook, YouTube and Yahoo!, respectively, ended 2011 as the top four websites both in the United States and globally, according to data presented by BurrellesLuce in its latest edition of “Top Media Outlets: Newspapers, Blogs, Consumer Magazines, Websites & Social Networks.”
The BurrellesLuce website rankings are based on data reported by Alexa for the month ending Dec. 22, 2011, in the case of the U.S.; and for the three-month period ending Dec. 22, in connection with global standings, as indicated by Alexa Global Reach scores. On Dec. 22, the Global Reach figures for the four leading sites were as follows: Google, 49.79; Facebook, 43.48; YouTube, 33.87, and Yahoo!, 22.54. Other websites finishing in the U.S. top 10 that also attained double-digit Global Reach scores were Wikipedia, 13.79  (ranked #7 in U.S. and #6 globally), Blog Spot, 12.39 (ranked #9 in U.S. and #7 globally), and Windows Live, 11.05 (ranked #10 in U.S. and #8 globally).

Read more here.

Once And For All, Are Newspapers Really Dying?

Wednesday, August 3rd, 2011

iStock_000016554022XSmallThe topic of newspapers, and of traditional media, “dying,” has come up in my blog posts before here and, more recently, here.  It’s difficult for me not to let out an audible groan when this topic creeps up once again across blogs and forums. Let’s consider these facts:

  • There was a newspaper boon in the 1890s, when the number exceeded 13,000 — about the same number as now – according to a recent Stanford University presentation.
  • Concluding a year-long study, U.S. newspapers are transforming, not going out of business, says Paul Steinle, a just-retired journalism professor and academic provost who ran United Press International from 1988-1990.
  • Some of the best newspapers in America – of all sizes – are now reporting profit margins averaging 10 percent to 15 percent a year despite devastating drops in advertising revenue over the last five years, according to Paul Steinle and his co-researcher, wife Dr. Sara Brown.
  • The Newton Daily News reported last month that their content “reaches more people today than at any point in its entire history.”
  • Recently retired Lexington Herald-Leader publisher Tim Kelly wrote that“there are 122 non-daily newspapers in Kentucky right now, only one fewer than 15 years ago. Not exactly a rush to extinction.”
  • Last month, Jason Schaumburg, editor of the Daily Chronicle reported, as reported to the Audit Bureau of Circulations, the papers overall circulation grew about 8 percent over last year –and online page views have increased 35 percent since 2008.
  • Released just last week, a comScore study for the Newspaper Association of America (NAA) showed newspaper websites posted the second consecutive quarterly traffic increase. NAA President and CEO John Sturm explains, “The credibility associated with newspapers and strong newspaper brands clearly carries over to the online environment — distinguishing newspaper sites from other sources.”


You Say You Want a Revolution… in 140 characters or less?

Monday, February 14th, 2011
by Rich Gallitelli*
Image: CNN @piersmorgan Twitter Revolution
Image: CNN @piersmorgan Twitter Revolution

Egypt is the hot button topic and we are all witnesses to what some want to describe as a 21st century revolution.  On CNN, last week, the network repeatedly displayed a large screen showing in real time the social media posts that were related to Egypt.  It was astonishing to see. The board could not keep up with the updating posts, so the board basically resembled something like an amusement park ride’s flashing neon lights. And just like those flashing lights, social network postings at a meteoric rate can be encapsulating.  But can the intrigue last, or better yet, sustain an entire movement?  

It can no longer be surprising that social media sites like Twitter, Facebook, YouTube, and the many countless blogs are being viewed as the forefront of this revolution. They have become what is the fulcrum of our collective “interconnectedness.” In my previous post, I discussed how email responses and phone etiquette, in today’s service orientated business world, are allowing employees to act as company brand ambassadors and, in turn, become the company’s brand. On the flip side of that, these company brand ambassadors are instantly accountable for their actions. Having a bad day?  Better not let that show up in your service industry work. The public’s demand for real time results has an agent of technology with new media to enact a change in dynamics in the moment and maybe even a change in social dynamics for an industry.  A waiter who gives poor service is no longer a regrettable experience between a few people.  Neither is a rude representative on the phone. Nor the president or parliament that fails to support its people. In today’s real time world, the negative experience instantly becomes online fodder for hundreds and potentially thousands to see.  Word of mouth, still the industry standard by which all companies build their reputations, no longer requires a face to face meeting for a poor review to be disseminated; it’s tweeted, it’s posted on Facebook, it’s blogged about and becomes part of an online community, with information that passes far beyond your own circle of contacts. 

Before the advent of social media, your reputation was built on the hundreds of positive reviews and one negative review didn’t fully transcend that reputation.  Now, that negative review becomes a flashpoint by which people will now effectively brand your reputation.  Think, did restaurants and hotels pay attention to comments and blogs about service in their establishments even just two or three years ago? I am sure they do now.  But can social media dispel the good reputations many service industry companies have accrued over the years?  Or is it just a flashpoint quickly brushed aside after it’s been tweeted and read?  Is it as lasting a movement, as say, the picture four activists sitting at the Woolworth counter in Greensboro, North Carolina? Hardly! Four students quickly grew to 600 protesters and in a few days, sit-ins had spread to Winston-Salem, twenty-five miles away, and Durham, fifty miles away. The day after that, students at Fayetteville State Teachers College and at Johnson C. Smith College, in Charlotte, joined in, followed on Wednesday by students at St. Augustine’s College and Shaw University, in Raleigh. On Thursday and Friday, the protest crossed state lines, surfacing in Hampton and Portsmouth, Virginia, in Rock Hill, South Carolina, and in Chattanooga, Tennessee.  Sound familiar?  No social media at the time. Malcolm Gladwell, recounts in this New Yorker article, “why the revolution will not be tweeted.” It’s the cause that rallied the people together, not someone updating their Facebook status while eating lunch.

The change and demand for freedom in Egypt is truly remarkable. It is something entirely different than what many generations have grown accustomed to.  No army.  No invasion.  No secession.  No strong victimizing the weak (for the most part).  And yes, we have one tweet at a time, one Facebook posting at a time, one woman’s bravery for a call to a common cause on YouTube.  One has turned into thousands and then millions, with billions of the world’s citizens watching events unfold in real time. But it all started in real-life, real-time.

February is Black History Month and I am reminded of Dr. Martin Luther King’s famous “I Have a Dream” speech. I am, as ever, amazed by the picture of all the people standing in the Washington Mall, demanding, peacefully, the equality rightfully given to them in the Constitution.  Imagine if that speech with the historical implications was given today. Would people attend or steam the video live at their computers?  Would people make the trip to Washington, D.C. or just comment about it on Facebook?  While social media has the ability to rapidly organize people to an event or a cause, it hasn’t shown that it can continue to extol its influence beyond that.  As Andrew K. Woods wrote in his recent op-ed for the New York Times, “Of course, great movements require great leaders. That’s why the leadership vacuum in the Middle East is so politically electric, and why Tunisia is still a mess. The crucial question, in Egypt as in Yemen and Tunisia, has little to do with Twitter’s availability. It is whether a galvanizing figure will step forward and seize this opportunity to lead, or remain in the crowd, just another decentralized node in the network.”

So while I am here, I will gladly and proudly proclaim “Viva La Revolution” and hope for a better Egypt. Yes, I am astonished at that screen of social media posts.  The question is, will the masses be listening, or better yet, tweeting, long after social media’s initial impact has been felt and the state of Egypt is left in the hands of the Egyptians? Or is social media just another hyped-up PR tactic?


*Bio: Richard Gallitelli brought a wealth of sales and customer-service experience when he came to BurrellesLuce in 2007. His outstanding performance as a sales associate and personalized shopper for Neiman Marcus (he also has worked for Nordstrom) earned him a nomination by Boston magazine as “Best of Boston” sales associate for high-end retail fashion stores. Rich’s talents also won him praise and a profile in the book, “What Customers Like About You: Adding Emotional Value for Service Excellence and Competitive Advantage,” written by best-selling business author Dr. David Freemantle. Rich majored in English Literature at William Paterson University, and is a published poet and short-story writer. Facebook: BurrellesLuce Twitter: BurrellesLuce LinkedIn: BurrellesLuce