Peace Love & Sillyness

Archive for the ‘PRCA 3330 Topic of the Week’ Category

For my final project in my PR Writing course we were asked to write a detailed blog about social media news releases. So, to begin, according to Realwire a SMNR is a press release format designed for the online media world. The story needs to be told in a format that is relevant to a wide variety of people, including: journalists, bloggers, publishers & the public.  SMNRs also aim to rethink the narrative, text-focused approach to news announcements, according to Social Media Training. There are many advantages I found of a SMNR, that include: optimized for search, optimized for conversation, optimized for sharing, tells the entire story through multimedia, provides context on complicated stories, and makes a better impression (visually) than a wire release.  After reading through many different websites about SMNRs, I believe that it would be good for a PR practitioner to publish one when trying to reach more or new audiences and/or when they are trying to introduce a new company or product to the public. SMNRs go way past what a traditional press release includes; they include hyperlinks to other references, your website, or background information. They may also include multimedia videos, audio & images, and can be published through Facebook, Twitter, etc.

Here is a link to an example of a SMNR from Symantec.

There are many different websites you can go to that will help you create your own SMNR, I have included links to two options:

  1. PRX Builder
  2. PitchEngine

Here are a few tips for writing a SMNR that I found on SmartBlog:

  1. Keep headlines short (should be no longer than 80 characters)
  2. Choose your keywords (what are some common words/phrases someone would search for when looking for this info? use these keywords to optimize your headline)
  3. Tell a story (get rid of the marketing-speak and craft a narrative you’d like to read)
  4. Aim for “diagonal” readers (take in a story in 10 seconds or less)
  5. Create multimedia objects
  6. Provide links to resources (these can be timesavers for journalists/bloggers, making them more likely to make your SMNR into a story)
  7. Make sharing easy (make sure your SMNR is going to work no matter where you post it)
  8. Make feedback easy (include an area for comments)

The topic of the week this week was to take a look at my site stats on wordpress under my dashboard. Under stats I was able to view many different things. What I found to be the best feature was being able to click on the specific days that I had created a new post and got individual stats about that day (how people got to the posts, how often each one was viewed, etc). It was nice to also see how many times my blog has been viewed overall and how many times on this particular day it has been; I was surprised to see that my blog has been viewed many more times than I thought. Honestly, I didn’t really find the site stats feature to be of much help, but I think for a PR professional or for an organization it could definitely be helpful. Being able to see how often your blog/site is being viewed could definitely give you somewhat of an insight of whether or not you should be updating as often as you are. The feature of seeing which posts have been viewed the most could give the PR professional insight to what their customers are most interested in and which they could care less about. I think it’s also helpful for the professional to be able to jump back to old posts without having to go through the entire blog.

For our TOW #9, we were assigned to sign up on PR OpenMic and explore what all it offers. First off, PR OpenMic is another form of social network for students, professors, & PR professionals.

One thing I really like on the site is the different blogs available to read and comment on. From what I could see, anyone who is a member of PR OpenMic can post on these blogs. I read through a lot of these blogs and read/learned a lot of interesting things about the PR world. Not being a PR major, I think, has been difficult in the class because I almost have to “research” some aspects more than just reading the book.

Another aspect of the site that I really like was the Jobs/Internships. Although I’m not necessarily looking for an internship in the PR profession, some of these links could eventually lead me to other companies that may suit my field. I think that this part of the site will be extremely helpful for classmates/other students at GSU/other friends looking for internships, and even for those who have already graduated that are looking for a job. I also found it very interesting that PR OpenMic had their own view on internships & stated that they believe that students should be paid.

Finally, I really liked the Members tab. Being able to connect with other members that you don’t necessarily know or have to search for is a great aspect. I feel like on some other social networking sites you have to search hard to find people to connect with and in the end are unsuccessful completely or just settle with those that you already know personally.

I don’t know how often I will log on to PR OpenMic, but it will definitely be something I recommend to others that I know are majoring in PR or that may already be working in the field or trying to get into it that don’t know about the site.


I have been actively tweeting on Twitter for the past couple of years now, so the assignment for my PR Writing class of 1 week of Twitter was a mixture of easy and hard. It was easy for me, obviously, because I tweet on a daily basis most weeks (unless I’m super busy & don’t have time); I follow and reply to others/friends or retweet things I find interesting or funny. The difficult part though was trying to find new PR professionals to follow and respond to, which I’m fairly certain I failed at (sorry Prof. Nixon); it was nice though to be able to follow my classmates and see what some of them had to say, especially since this course is online and we don’t necessarily all know one another it was a great chance to see what things interested everyone. Since my major is no longer PR but Recreation and I am currently looking into internships for Summer 2011 I used the week to find new companies or professionals that work in the recreation/tourism field. I didn’t necessarily respond or retweet any of them, but even today it’s nice to log on to my account and see what they’re up to…it almost gives me an insight to what my life could be like if I were to intern/eventually work for them.
Like I said before, I mostly retweet things that I find interesting or funny, so here are a few people that I follow that I recommend (with links to their twitter profiles):
1. Funny or die
2. Conan O’Brien
3. Total Frat Move (yes, I realize not everyone will find these funny)
4. To Write Love On Her Arms (most days they post numerous inspirational quotes…love it!)
5. And, finally, a friend of mine, Joe Bryant

For anyone who would like to follow me, here is a link to my profile (: I don’t promise a lot of wit or charm or even anything interesting some days.

For my PR Writing course, we were asked to blog about what makes a story newsworthy. I found a list on Mediacollege.com that gives different criteria for newsworthiness and explains what each is. Here are a few I found to be most important:

  • Timing: news = NEW (obviously)….so if something occurred today, then yes, it is news; however, if it happened two weeks ago, then it’s old and not a newsworthy story
  • Significance
  • Human Interest: these stories are different than traditional news stories in that they don’t date as quickly, they don’t necessarily affect a large group of people, and it doesn’t matter where in the world it has occurred.

As I am currently in my 15th year of school (ew!), I have heard year after year from teachers to not plagiarize. Obviously I understand that plagiarizing is serious and definitely unethical, whether you’re a student or professional, but the internet has definitely made it seem not as serious of an issue as it is. There have been many times when I get online there are advertisements for websites to purchase term papers, etc; and in recent years I have even known people who have had to go before judicial affairs at their universities for plagiarizing (intentional or not). I found a video on youtube from the University of Illinois that tells students what plagiarism is and how to avoid it.

Grammar Girl:

The podcast I chose to listen to was Who versus Whom. Before it even began I knew I would learn something because I have always struggled with when to use whom. It definitely put me at ease to hear in the podcast that numerous people called and wrote in asking for Grammar Girl to discuss this issue; I feel like most people today just use Who whether it is correct or not.

I learned that whom deals with whatever the object of the sentence is. The example given was this: if I say “I love you” you would respond with “Whom do you love?” since You is the object of the sentence. I honestly don’t know that this was taught to me in any English class I have taken in the past 17 years of schooling (whoa! that’s a long time!..weird!). And I loved the “dirty tip” Grammar Girl gave at the end saying that if you could answer the question with “Him” you use “Whom” and if you could answer with “He” then use “Who”.

Thanks for the help Grammar Girl, I will definitely be visiting this site again for more tips!