Reading Notes

Another book we will be reading this semester is titled “A Survival Guide to Social Media and Web 2.0 Optimization,” by Deltina Hay. It gives “Strategies, Tactics, and Tools for Succeeding in the Social Web.”

Chapter 1- The introductory chapter discusses 3 things to keep in mind when making your social media plan:

  1. Interactivity-commenting on blogs, giving ideas to others on social media websites
  2. Sharing– linking images, videos, websites to friends online
  3. Collaboration-using bookmarking sites and contributing to feeds

By commenting on blogs, sharing photos and videos, and working with other programs, you can optimize your presence and networking abilities on the Internet. The chapter also discusses badges, which are essentially images and links that you can add to your pages in order to make them more “linkable to other sites.

Chapter 2– This chapter discusses the importance of adding tags and keywords. By using phrases and ideas that are related to a blog post, picture, article, or anything you are working with online, you can make it more visible to others by providing tags. It can make them pop up on Google or other search engines before others and therefore, gain more popularity and views.

By adding personal information to your social media profiles, you can increase the chance for finding others and others finding you online. This will create the opportunity for making more connections and making your blog or website more friendly!

Chapter 3– The main thing I learned from this chapter was what “RSS” meant: Really Simple Syndication. Which is ironic, because I was assuming it had some elaborate meaning. By using an RSS feed, you generate content, make the “feed” available, and then anyone who subscribes can read it. By using tags, categories, links, and tracebacks, you can make your feed incredibly functional online.

The author discusses using programs like FeedBurner to manage your feeds, promote them, troubleshoot them, etc. Your feed is not going to grow without care, just like a flower without water.

Chapter 4– By personalizing your blog with creative details, you can make it more appealing and fun to update. Headers are at the top of the blog, and can be a sentence or statement about the blog and what readers can expect from reading on. It can be anything catchy or expressive that will catch attention and prompt people to want to follow. A footer, on the other hand, is less personal and contains the important copyrights and credit to the designers of the webpage. Do not remove this or you may have problems!

Adding a sidebar to your blog is a way to make it easy to navigate and organize. You can include things like widgets, categories, tags, calendars, archives, etc. The sky is the limit to the appearance of your blog!

Chapter 5– This chapter discusses podcasts, which are “a series of audio or video files that is distributed over the internet and can be syndicated and subscribed to.” The author gives these tips to making the best podcast possible:

  • Many audio and video search engines use speech recognition software to identify keep terms within podcasts.
  • You add the metadata for each podcast episode when you save it as an MP3 file.  Repeat key terms from the actual spoken episode in this metadata.  Metadata describes other data. It provides information about a certain item’s content.
  • The page where each podcast episode resides is called its landing page.  Its advisable to repeat key terms from the podcast here also.

Like a podcast, a webcast is an online broadcast of information, which can be about any topic and usually consists of a series of videos or updates. YouTube tends to be the most popular website for creating weekly or daily webcasts.

Chapter 6– Being involved in a social network can be one of the most rewarding and important activities you can engage in. It allows you to connect with millions of others, whether for a personal or business reason, and stay updated in their daily lives. Some popular social networking sites include:

  • Facebook
  • MySpace
  • Twitter
  • LinkedIn

They are free and relatively easy ways to get active online and connect. Facebook tends to be the most popular, while sites like Twitter are considered more “micro-blogs” because they only allow you to post a limited amount of information at a time. LinkedIn is more of a professional profile that can be helpful with sending resumes and experience to employers.

Chapter 7– Along with social networking, you can use social bookmarks to keep track of your favorite websites for others to view. Not only is this helpful to the individual, it can be very useful for students working on projects to send websites to classmates. The most popular website for social bookmarking is Delicious. It is free and doesn’t take long to add a long list of your favorite websites.

Crowd-sourcing is a way to allow users to determine the popularity of websites, news-sources, and blogs through voting. Sites such as Technorati, Digg, and StumbleUpon all offer these services. They are different from social bookmarks because they share information and facts, rather than opinions and favorites.

Chapter 8– This chapter focuses on media communities.  They are websites that users can visit and post opinions and share advice with others on multimedia topics and items. It is a great way to connect based on common interests and hobbies. Some sites focus on sharing images, such as Flickr, and allow people a place to format and keep all of their photos online.

“Playlists” can be used to organize videos and show them to others. Before you create a specific playlist, you can create a draft version, or a “quicklist.” You can also add a badge to a website, which is essentially a small caption of another social website in the version of a widget.

Chapter 9Widgets and Badges are the focus of this chapter. By definition in the book…

“Widgets are snippets of code, usually displayed graphically, that can be used to syndicate content, for example RSS feeds, or to add interactive features that users can drop onto their own blogs or websites.

Badges are an icon or logo that has a link back to its source, which serves as a way of displaying one’s membership or presence in a community on the Social Web.”

They can be used to customize blogs and make them more personal. Widgets can display things such as the weather, a poll, a countdown, calendar, game, or countless other options. Including widgets makes blogs more interactive and can increase the number of follows to your page if they are fun and useful. A badge is essentially an image that represents a link to another website or page. Including badges increases the possiblity of someone visiting one of your other social networks.

Chapter 10 Social media newsrooms are places for businesses, teachers, or individuals to gain a lot of media coverage and tend to have lots of media and news releases on a daily basis. They shouldn’t replace original websites, but should be a place for people to visit in order to gain recent information and current news on a specific business or topic. You can do several things with a social media newsroom:

  1. View recent and past events
  2. Organize press releases, old and new
  3. Keep track of major media coverage
  4. Download photos, videos, podcasts, etc.
  5. Store personal information on employees

These newsrooms should be supplements to the original company webpage and should be updated daily in order to be useful to viewers. Keep things interactive and useful.

Chapter 11– I learned something useful in this chapter, which was what exactly a “wiki” is. Hawaiian for “fast,” the term describes websites that allow users to post and update information, no matter if it is true or not. Quite possibly the most popular “wiki” website is Wikipedia, which is a virtual online encyclopedia that contains lots of information, some useful and some just complete lies. People still flock to these websites despite their lack of credibility.

Users can create social pages, where they can discuss any topic they desire and talk about them with others who share similar interests. Another Internet sensation, 3-D worlds, give people the sense that they can have another life online. These websites create a “virtual community” that they can be a part of and interact with millions of others across the world.

Chapter 12– The author discusses 3 things to ask yourself when optimizing your website:

  • Can users interact with the content?
  • Can visitors share the content easily with others?
  • Does the site encourage collaboration?

Having a successful and effective website is all about interactivity and allowing feedback and commentary from others. If not, your website or blog will just be like an online reference or book. It will be boring and people will not want to read it. You can make the most out of your social media expereince by adding widgets, tags, RSS feeds, and bookmarks to make it more interesting.

Chapter 13– Much like using crowd-sourcing, social ranking is a way for users to see the relevancy of their pages and how searchable they are online. It is a great way to determine what you can improve and fix on your blog in order to make it more popular. You can also use a “lifestream,” which is like a blog, but contains streams and bits of information from other social networking sites instead of personalized information and posts. The author also talks about the concept of potential social networking distribution, which would allow users to carry around their virtual profile and identity throughout different websites and networks. This is an excellent idea because there are so many social networking sites, usernames, and passwords to keep track of!

Chapter 14– Before you jump into the social networking world, it is important to establish some goals or things you would like to achieve by using the Internet. By having a set of strategies and tactics, you can understand and implement exactly what you want, and hopefully get the kind of experience you want out of it. The book discusses the following:

  1. Increasing web traffic
  2. Driving sales or new business
  3. Monitoring brand awareness
  4. Improving customer relations
  5. Managing reputation
  6. Establishing credibility
  7. Creating buzz
  8. Improving public relations

No matter what you decide to use social media for, using the “survival guide” can help you along the way. Remembering to be original and interactive in your experience are key factors.


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Filed under PRCA 3030 Social Media, Reading Notes- Survival Guide

Social networking beneficial for Long Beach businesses

I recently came across an article about how businesses and nonprofit organizations are benefitting from using social networking sites in a tough and changing economy. According to Kristopher Hanson at the Press-Telegram of Long Beach, California, local companies in the city have had recent success in using services such as Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, and Yelp. With the opportunity to use these social media sites for free advertising with cusomters, businesses everywhere are taking advantage of the Internet. It definitely is an easy way for customers to give free feedback, whether it is good or bad, for the employers to use at their disposal. Hanson puts it into clear terms:

“By posting updates, sale notices, special events and competitions on a growing network of sites, tech-savvy businesses are growing buzz and sparking interest with existing and new customers.”

The article talks about how one restaurant in Long Beach offers free appetizers and desserts for customers who can correctly answer a question each week. I think this is a brilliant and easy way to gain customer loyalty to their social media websites and provide a fun contest that will differentiate them from other restaurants in the community. Since the majority of business owners tend to be in their late 40s and up, knowing how to create blogs and use the Internet is a key skill that employers will be looking for among new graduates. According to a study in the article, sales increased 41% over a 10-week period for a company who used a Web-based campaign to improve sales. Sounds like an improvement to me!

Information used in this post can be found at the following website:

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My Blog Comments- 3711

#1. “Portfolios for Public Relations Students” by Barbara Nixon

(2/24/10) I think that the portfolio is a creative and essential piece for public relations students to have because sometimes the work we have done is not represented the best on a resume. I do not have a lot of information that I could put in my portfolio because I currently haven’t done an internship and campaigns is the only class I have completed where I have organized any sort of PR event. I do think including social media pieces can be tricky, but it will be very useful to include blogs and other facets that can showcase one’s writing and online skills. This post was helpful and got me thinking about what I need to do to be better prepared!

#2. “Informational Interview Recap” by Marie Lorelei

(4/13/10) I enjoyed reading your interview because it was simple and easy to follow. you got straight to the point, and Marla’s comments were interesting and helpful. I liked her 3 tips, especially “learn to manage difficult people,” because this is obviously a skill anyone in the job field needs to work on. Although I am aware that public relations and communications deals a lot with writing, it scared me that she said to “learn it, live it, and love it.” I don’t love it! And like you, I am not sure that I necessarily want to work in public relations when I graduate in May. It seems like you have great writing skills and style and I think you will do well in whatever you decide to pursue! Good luck in the future!

#3. “Trade Book Review- Naked Conversations” by Marie Lorelei

(4/13/10) I also read Naked Conversations for my Trade Book Review. Although I did learn some facts about how to get the most out of my blog and how to be successful in the corporate world when it comes to blogging and customer relationships, I didn’t think it was something I would recommend to a friend either. Blogging does take a lot of time and work, and I personally would not have a blog currently if it wasn’t required by my online classes. I think they are a great way to get involved online and meet others in the public relations field, but I would rather meet people in person and form relationships that way, not online. I know social media is becoming incredibly huge, but I am not the most computer-savvy person. I’m glad I wasn’t the only one who thought the book was boring!

#4.  “Social Media is a Double-Edged Sword” by Allison Allmond

(4/13/10) I totally agree that social media has its’ pros and cons. Although I enjoy emailing and getting on Facebook, I am not a huge computer person. I would much rather talk and interact in person, rather than through a screen. Since social networking and using programs such as LinkedIn and Twitter have become popular for companies to use, it is obviously important for students to get their names out there for any opportunity they can receive. It is definitely a double-edged sword in my eyes. It obviously is going to be smarter to be able to reach thousands of people online by social networking, than only dozens by networking yourself the old-fashioned way. Hopefully the social media tips we have received can help us in the future!

#5. “In Vogue at the Interview” by Allison Allmond

(4/13/10) This article was soo creative. I loved that your way of looking at dressing for an interview as being “in vogue” and up to current trends. We are in public relations, and it is important to show our creative sides. I especially loved your quote from Larry Platt about the “pants on the ground.” Hilarious!! He is so funny. I think “spicing it up” with something bright and interesting can be a great conversation starter and a good way to make yourself remembered after an interview. I tend to wear mostly neutrals, especially black and white, and will keep in mind your tips when I shop for more business-appropriate clothes in the near future. Boring attire is for boring people, and if you are in communications, you are most likely pretty outgoing!

#6. “Internships” by Stephanie Medlin

(4/13/10) I think it is so hard for graduates in this economy. As a student athlete, I didn’t have the time to work or receive any internship experience until this summer. I wish that my internship could be paid, but I know that this is not the best time for companies and the work force in general. My brother recently got accepted into the Disney Program for the end of his freshmen year of college. Although he will get paid a little each month, that is still better than me! Internships are crucial to gaining on-hand experience and networking with potential employers, and I am grateful to have gotten offered one, even if it means I may have to look for a job on the side to make some extra cash. Hopefully you will have good luck with your career in the future!

#7. “Body Language and Non Verbal Communication” by Stephanie Medlin

(4/13/10) Your post definitely made me recognize the fact that I use nonverbals all the time and don’t even notice it! I am extremely expressive with my face, and roll my eyes entirely too much. I often don’t even realize it until someone comments on it. I think it is so unattractive and is a bad habit that I need to fix, especially once I start going on interviews soon. On the other hand, I think I can use my knowledge of nonverbals to help me on an interview or working with people. I am pretty good at guessing people’s personalities, and working in public relations, it is important to be good with people. When I am on Skype, I definitely notice how funny my nonverbals are! Do I really look like that? Videotaping yourself is definitely a good tool for practicing good habits.

#8. “Top 10 Things I Learned” by Kacie Whigham

(4/13/10) Your slide show for practicum was really interesting! I especially liked how you included etiquette and keeping your car clean as things you learned. Those are things I didn’t really consider but are obviously important when entering any career. Your appearance and attitude definitely make a big difference. Catering your resume to the job you are applying for is something I learned also. Making it seem that you are focused on working for a specific employer can emphasize to them how interested you are. I did not create a portfolio yet because I do not have a lot of work to show, but it is a great way to show employers what you can do for them. Employers are often unsure what public relations students specialize in, so showing them the work and skills you have will help them out.

#9. “Ben Roethlisberger..” by Victoria Greene

(4/13/10) You came up with some great ways to help Ben! Definitely staying away from college students and alcohol in general when you are a professional football player is a good first step. Putting yourself in situations where there can be potential trouble is not a good idea for anyone in the limelight. He went to college in Ohio where a lot of my friends go, and I have followed him for some years. I am not sure if he is guilty of what happened, but I heard on the radio a few days ago that the charges were dropped. What is it lately with guys and their sexual issues?!? Jesse James and Tiger both need some good PR behind them if they want to bring their careers and images back to normal.

#10. “Tips for Creating an Effective Coverletter” by Phillip Edwards

(4/15/10) I like how you make a point of requesting an interview or follow-up call. My roommate recently called a company that she had interviewed with to follow up with them and see where they stood with her, and I didn’t think this was something you were supposed to do. I guess she was right! Letting a company know you are interested and going out of your way to talk to them shows determination. You make a great point that you need to be active, not passive. I have sort of had an attitude that things will happen for me, but I know now that they will not fall in my lap.

#11. “Benefits and Pitfalls of Social Media for Jobseekers” by Phillip Edwards

(4/15/10) I can’t believe that there are 500,000 new members on social media each day! I know there are billions of people in the world, but that is such a crazy statistic to me. It is obviously where society is headed, and it is important for people in communications and public relations to implement this tool into their practices. I do agree that social media can have complicated features. It is almost the end of the semester, and I still have trouble figuring out how to format my blog sometimes! I also think it is a con that verbal skills can’t be shown, unless it is through a podcast or webcast.

#12. “Social Media: A Jobseeker’s Dream-Come-True or Worst Nightmare?” by Candice Hall

(4/15/10) Searching for someone’s name instead of a specific company is definitely a benefit of social media. I know more people than I do businesses, and hopefully this will help me get a job in the future. It is all about who you know, not necessarily what you know. I have found this true in so many cases in life. It is also important to be private in what you post online! You are so right. I have found that my habits on Facebook and Twitter have changed over the past few years because I do not necessarily post anything that I wouldn’t want an employer to see.

#13. “Redefining the ‘Kodak Moment‘” by Candice Hall

(4/15/10) You made a great point that Kodak used the Diffusion Theory in implementing the new digital aspect of photography into their brand. It is obviously a huge change in the market, and it was important for Kodak to show their customers the importance of adapting to the new products. I used to take photography and develop my own photos, and it took me some time before I got a digital camera. It was a lot to do with my family and friends and also to do with the marketing surrounding the products I saw on television. I think Kodak has changed its’ name for the best.

#14. “Hula and Interning..A Lot More in Common Than You Would Expect” by Shannon McCloud

(4/15/10) I am so jealous that you got to spend time in Hawaii! It sounds like you had a great time and learned many different things that will help you in your career. I really liked the hula proverbs you learned, especially “E nana, e ho’olohe. E pa’a ka waha, e hana ka lima.” It is neat that the same basic rules and philosophies we follow are apparent in other cultures as well. I am from Ohio, and I think of Georgia as a sort of paradise compared to where I used to live! I think it is gorgeous in Statesboro because there is green all year round and sunshine as well! It is interesting living in different places and learning what others have to say about them.

#15. “Maybe it Runs in the Family..” by Allison Allmond

I really enjoyed this article! I love Paula Deen and I have ate at her restaurant and Uncle Bubba’s multiple times. I had no idea that there was an actual position for event coordinating! I would love to do that. I think it is interesting how so many people work in jobs that were not necessarily their major in college. I am not sure if i will work directly in public relations, but event planning or sports marketing are definitely things I am interested in. It seems like your cousin really likes her job and has enjoyed much success. Best of luck to her and to you!

#16. “What to Wear to a PR Job Interview” by Phillip Edwards

(4/15/10) I also think it is quite funny to picture a woman will an old-fashioned briefcase. These days, so many guys as well as girls carry a messenger bag or something leather that is professional. I do not understand how people down south wear long sleeves and pants in the summertime! I am from Ohio, and I find it very hard to wear pants and jeans to work in the summer. It is so humid down here, and I find it crazy that southerners are able to wear pants. Obviously they have to because it is professional haha.

#17. “Interships” by Kristin Bixby

(4/15/10) I am in the same boat in that I have only had experience in public relations because of the classes that I have taken. I am a student-athlete, and I have not have the time to complete an internship until this summer after I graduate in May. I think it is hard for students these days to intern during school because they are involved in other activities and work jobs to pay for school. While gaining experience is crucial, I think companies and employers are much more understanding because they know the economy is bad and students have to do what they can to get by.

#18. “Informational Interview Recap” by Kristin Bixby

(4/15/10) I think it is funny that Allie described working in PR as nothing like Samantha from Sex & the City! When people ask me what public relations is, sometimes I say “oh, it is what Samantha on SATC did.” Which is obviously a silly comment because she was usually with men instead. But I definitely held a sort of stereotype that PR was all glitz and glamour before I took classes in it. It will be interesting to see how much I implement Twitter and Facebook if I decide to pursue a career in event planning or PR when I graduate. I think the profession does not get enough credit for the hard work and planning that is required!

#19. “Benefits and Pitfalls of Social Media for Jobseekers” by Kristin Bixby

(4/15/10) It is a great point that social media helps you stand out among your competitors. None of my close friends are in communications or public relations, and they are not aware of what Twitter or LinkedIn is, let alone how to run a blog. While I may complain about my online classes quite a bit, it is obviously a skill that will differentiate me from others. I try to tell my friends to start building some sort of skill with social networking sites, but it is more of a communications and public relations skill, at least for now. Until then, I will keep blogging and hope that my skills can get me a job in the near future!

#20. “Styrofoam and Social Media” by Shannon McCloud

(4/15/10) I consider myself relatively old-school when it comes to social media as well! While I have an Ipod and a cell phone, that is about as technical as I get. I would much rather be outside playing than working on the computer. I do not mind getting online from time to time, but I am pretty outgoing and talk way too much. I can not channel this easily through writing. It seems that social media is here to stay so I am going to have to suck it up and join everyone else. I find that it can be complicated, and that is one of the main reasons I do not want to use it. Oh well!

#21. “Career Fair” by Jacqueline Henry

(4/15/10) I attended a smaller career fair yesterday, and it was also my first one. I am not very shy, but I am somewhat nervous when I entered. It is kind of awkward just going up to someone and introducing yourself because you want to work for them. I think it is hard for anyone to do that, even if you are in communications. I did think the Communication Arts Career Fair had a lot more to offer for PR than a normal Career Fair at Georgia Southern would. I imagine not many PR companies would attend that because there are not that many students in PR. I am not sure if I will make any important connections in a Career Fair, but it can’t hurt to try.

#22. “Body language and Non Verbal Communication” by Jacqueline Henry

(4/15/10) It was really interesting to see all of the different actions that we do everyday and what they portray to others. I roll my eyes a lot, but I do not intend for that to be seen as rude and snobby. It is a habit I will need to fix when going on job interviews. I do tilt my head to the side all the time, and this may sound corny, but it definitely is because I am listening to what people have to say. I rub my hands a lot also, but I had no idea this means you are anticipating something. It really is interesting that the little things we do can have such a big impact on how others see us. Hopefully I can be on my best behavior when I need to be.

#23. “Twitter vs. DVR” by Kacie Whigham

(4/15/10) I had no idea that people could use Twitter and DVRs simultaneously. I love going home and watching shows on my DVR, but I never thought of the possibility of “watching” the show with others via the Internet. I would be upset if I also found something out that I didn’t want to know because someone posted it on Twitter before I got to watch a show. I think it is a creative idea, but I would much rather stick to one or the other. When I am bored, I tend to follow people on Twitter. When I watch my shows, I do just that!

#24. “My Interview with a True P.R. Pro” by Meghan Callahan

(4/15/10) That is very neat that you got to interview someone who definitely knows their stuff when it comes to public relations. I have heard of Edelman before and am so jealous that he gets to work for them in San Francisco, because that is one of my favorite cities to visit! It scares me that he says to stay up on media every day, because to be honest, I am not a fan of checking my email and blog all of the time! I think it is great that he said personality and experience make you stand out to a potential employer. Hopefully I can use those to help land a job with a PR firm soon.

#25.  “Cover Letter Tips” by Jeff Carter

(4/15/10) I agree that having a great cover letter is like putting your best foot forward for a company to see. While I used WinWay resume to create my cover letter, there are definitely some great resources online that can help you create one catered to your specific needs. I have found that I tend to use the same format for my cover letter when sending out my resume, but I tweek parts of it so that it fits the job description of what I am applying for. Cover letters. along with resumes, are always changing, and it is important to add important changes and experience to them as you change.

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Tiger and PR…What Will It Do?

A week ago, I went to the Master’s Practice Round. Although I was excited to see the course and my favorite golfer Adam Scott, I was really anxious to see how the crowd would react to Tiger during his first appearance on the golf course since his cheating scandal hit. I knew that anyone who heckled him or decided to act in an inappropriate manner would immediately be removed from the premises, but there was still the chance that someone would do that. When I saw him on the 4th hole, he was smiling and appeared calm and collected. The crowd clapped and cheered, “Glad to have ya back, Tiger!” Despite all of the troubles and wrongdoings he had created over the past months, the general public, especially golf, wanted to see him succeeded. Any other person that cheated on his wife with multiple women would not receive such a warm welcoming. But why did Tiger? It is because of the image and fame that the media has associated with the golf mogul for the past decade. Considerably the most well-known and highest-paid athlete in the world, Tiger Woods is seemingly unbreakable in the eyes of many. Despite being pulled from several of his endorsements, Nike is using public relations and advertising to bring Tiger back to the top. Here is a recent commercial that was aired during the Masters:

Whether you love him or hate him, this type of commercial catches the attention and makes an impact. It will undoubtedly be interesting to see how Tiger’s PR and Nike will try to repair his public image over the coming months.


Filed under PR Connections, PRCA 3030 Social Media

The Viral Video Phenomenon

“Ouch, Charlie! That hurts!”

At the time I wrote this post, the popular YouTube video “Charlie Bit My Finger” had over 177 million views. For a simple video posted by a mom for sheer laughs, that is probably not the popularity she expected when she uploaded the video. This video and thousands of others have been made famous on websites like “YouTube” and “Funny or Die,” where anyone can upload a video and make it viral. Whether it’s meant to be informative, serious, expressive, or just for laughs, people all over the world have become obsessed with watching others via the Internet. For me, watching videos is a cheap and free form of entertainment that I do quite often for a quick break in my day. Videos have gained so much popularity and views because of the linkability that viral videos possess. Friends often post videos to my Facebook page, and I do the same in return. Humans enjoy watching others, whether they are getting hurt trying to pull a cool skateboard trick, or impersonating their favorite celebrities. New technology has made it easy to record video, by using phones, Ipods, cameras, webcams, and other gadgets to capture moments. As long as people will continue doing stupid things and recording them, viral videos aren’t going away soon. These two are my all-time personal favorite viral videos!


Filed under PRCA 3030 Social Media, TOW- Topics of the Week

Widgets and Badges..What are They?

When I hear the words “widget” and “badge,” I think of some sort of funny gadget or new toy. I was aware of what a widget was by using them in my blog, however. A widget is essentially a tiny application or program that you can add to a website. It can be anything from an advertisement, poll, weather forecast, news update, or even a game. Widgets make blogs and webites more personal and interactive for viewers and are generally free and easy to add. A badge, on the other hand, is a way to make your Facebook profile and status updates viewable on your blog. It is a feature that is created through Facebook that makes it easy to display the information you want about your profile on other websites by embedding it where you’d like. So the major difference between the two is that a widget updates information or advertising that can be about virtually any topic, while a badge updates information that is personal and through a social networking website. An organization I am a part of, the Georgia Southern Swim Team, could benefit by using widgets and badges by the simple reason that they make websites functional and current. Widgets could be used to post polls and receive information from supporters of the team, or update information about current events and meet schedules. Badges could be used to display profiles of swimmers and update fans on their current statuses and whereabouts. Using widets and badges are a simple and fun way to personalize your online experience!

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Podcast #1 of Lauren’s PR Podcast Station for Beginners

Show Notes:

music: “such great heights” by the postal service

show name: Lauren’s PR Podcast for Beginners by Lauren Parr, March 31, 2010

Topic: Internship Advice for PR Students

Discussion (based on blog postcreated for PR Practicum)

 internship is “an advanced student or graduate in a professional field gaining supervised practical experience.” Being an intern is like working with a mentor, where someone with knowledge in public relations or communications can fill you in on what they know and guide you to become better informed and prepared for the future. No matter what kind of career you are going into, it is important to do some sort of internship beforehand in order to understand the kind of environment you are entering. A surgeon does not start operating on a patient the day they graduate from med school; they work as an intern or resident so they are fully prepared for their work. The same goes for public relations professionals. Depending on what kind of company you are working for, there are different skills and knowledge that are required for the particular job.  On the blog “Entry Level Rebel,” Jessica Stillman offers six tips for getting the most out of an internship.

  1.  Consider applying at a start-up
  2. D0 your homework
  3. Be the go-to person at all times
  4. Be innovative- think before you ask
  5. Think like the CEO
  6. Take notes and keep a to-do list

  According to the blog, “Career Advancement- Tips to Maximize an Internship Into Career Success,” it is crucial to stay in connection with the people you work with. By letting the employer you worked under know what you are currently doing, this will “…keep your name in front of the employer.” You never know when you will need someone’s advice or help to get you where you want to be.

 The most important aspect of choosing an internship is making sure it appeals to you! Tory Johnson, CEO of “Women for Hire,” gives this pointer in the blog “Top Tips for Picking an Internship.” Pick something that you feel will give you the kind of experience and work you are looking for to give you the skills you need for your dream job!

 theme music again

Thank you for listening to Lauren’s PR Podcast for Beginners #1 on March 31, 2010.

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