Monday, November 29, 2010

YouTube PR

Besides just learning what PR is and how it's practiced in the real world, it's also used to get a message out to the public quickly after a scandal or crisis has broken.  YouTube is an outlet for communication between the PR company and the public, providing a simple and sure fire way to get people's attention.

Using YouTube as an Effective PR tool

How PR Pros are using YouTube
One of the biggest scandals of 2009-2010 was Tiger Woods and his infidelity. His public apology was posted on youtube as well as a couple videos of him trying to get back on track a year after everything went down. Videos about his on YouTube were pouring in, which was an effective PR tool.
Tiger Woods Scandal

Political campaigns videos are highly viewed on youtube.  People post political debates, campaign trail videos and still shots, and interviews with candidates.  It's a fast and easy way to keep the online world in the loop with the political world.

McCain vs. Obama speech

YouTube is a good PR tool because it reaches a larger audience.  It captures the attention of the younger generation because we are the majority of YouTube visitors and social media advocates.  YouTube is also an international website, reaching the public of Europe if needed or Egypt if need be.  It's a universal tool and serves as a forum for the whole world.

Viral videos are huge these days. Viral videos are used to promote a certain item or person and they are shared through the internet, mostly YouTube and become instantly popular.  They can promote products, music, people, animals, anything.  For example:

Viral Video

This video helped promote Chris Brown's "Forever" without meaning to.  What a great way to get the public's attention!

Why YouTube?

Monday, November 8, 2010


There are countless ways for people to learn the basics of PR.  There are online classes, college courses and books written about the ins and outs of PR strategies.  YouTube has become one of the most popular outlets for learning about the industry, with both funny and educational videos, YouTube has joined the rest in efforts to school the world about PR.

To start off this string of blogs about YouTube and PR I thought I'd include some videos that explain what PR is by working professionals and experts in the industry.  As I go on throughout the semester I intend to upload some videos that were used to promote items, companies and people but let's start at the beginning.  What is PR?

Public Relations 101

Just because I like to hear what the average, everyday kind of person says about topics, I included this "man on the street" interview in which the reporter asks random people what they think PR is.  It's crazy how little people know about something we've been learning and have become so educated in the past four years.

Man on the Street

First of all, we all know PR is not just about working with celebs and clearing the break up rumors.  However, there are lots of people out there who don't know enough about the industry that they believe that's all we've learned to do. This video is a spoof on PR, showcasing two celebs represented by a PR company that's trying to get the word out there that they're dating.  It's clever and entertaining, but it shows the side of PR that us college students and professors don't like to be pegged as.

Spoof on Public Relations

Monday, October 25, 2010

"sic em rangers"

FINALLY.  Thats the word on everyone's minds when it comes to the games this past weekend.  The Texas Rangers finally pulled out an ALCS championship against the New York Yankees.  We're finally going to the World Series.  The Rangers have got their act together and the fans all throughout Texas are beside themselves.  

So what does this have to do with PR?

  • With such a huge win against the Yankees and a trip to the world series just around the corner, the rangers PR team really doesn't have much work to do.  They can advertise the World Series as much as they want but fans are going to watch no matter what. 
  • The "claw" phenomenon is a gesture Ranger's utility man, Esteban German, came up with when the Rangers were playing in Oklahoma City last season. The hand sign has become a part of the Rangers culture that is now known across the country.  German said "we started doing it in spring training if a guy would get hit. it's very cool. it's like a long distance high-five." The claw and antlers started off as an inside joke between Nelson Cruz, who has a deer hanging above his locker for inspiration, and his teammates.  To everyone's surprise the gestures became so popular there's a "claw cam" and a "deer cam" between innings to catch fans showing their support throughout the game.  What started out to be a funny gesture between teammates has turned out to be the #1 PR tactic imaginable. 
  • Josh Hamilton, Ranger's 2nd baseman, had a rocky past with alcohol abuse and when the ranger's won on Friday people began to wonder how he'd go about celebrating.  In true Ranger's fashion, the team decided to celebrate with ginger ale instead of champagne so every player could be included during such a special moment. This created a great image of teamwork and loyalty between the teammates, which also contributed to their PR efforts.  A good image can go a long way and the fact that they cared enough about his past to respect the present moment said a lot about the team morale and their individual characters. 
Ranger's Stats:
  • Ranger's salary combined: $55 million, Yankee's player A-Rod salary: $55 million
  • Yankees have gone to the world series more than any other team in MLB
  • Rangers v. Yankees game 6 was the 2nd highest watched MLB game in history (8.6 million)
  • Josh Hamilton won the series MVP award
  • Rangers will be playing the San Francisco Giants in the 106th World Series  starting Oct. 27th

My point in all of this is to show how PR can used without effort; the Ranger's have created their own publicity without even knowing it. 

On to the Bears.  This weekend we beat Kansas State, which makes us bowl eligible for the first time since 1995.  This is a HUGE deal for students, alumni, coaches and of course the players.  Baylor stats have been all over ESPN, the internet, the Baylor website, Twitter, Facebook statuses and the news.  Not only is this a big win for the athletic department, but it's a big win for the PR department.  I have friends on facebook who graduated years ago who have uploaded a picture of the polls, which shows Baylor is ranked #25 in the nation.  BaylorProud on Twitter has posted statistics, fun facts and poll results ever since the game ended Saturday night.  There are blogs, news reports and e-mails being sent around with the good news.  Social media is playing a massive role in Baylor's PR efforts and the football team has gotten more attention in the past 48 hours than in the past 10 years.  

The Texas Rangers and the Baylor Bears are two teams who have been highly underrated, yet highly followed for the past 20 years.  They're both teams who everyone wants to do well but can't ever seem to get there.  They've put endless amount of hard work into achieving something great, and they've finally reached their goals.  The Ranger's and Bear's victories this week aren't just great for the time being, these two games will be remembered forever.  It's the Ranger's first trip to the World Series in franchise history and it's also the Bear's first trip to a bowl game in over 15 years. The PR departments for both teams can take a step back, breathe and let the publicity take the reigns. 

Baylor Stats: 
  • #24 in Coaches poll (first time since '95)
  • #25 in AP poll (first time since '93)
  • #25 in BCS poll
  • #1 in the Big 12 South (6-2) (3-1 Conference) 
  • #13 most popular searched on google as of saturday night
  • Only bowl eligible team in the Big 12 Conference
  • We're ranked and UT isn't (YES!)
  • We beat ranked Kansas State  47-42

Monday, October 18, 2010

PR Disasters!

The PR industry basically runs on disasters.  Fixing, tweaking, and smoothing over situations is the bottom line of Public Relations.  Fineman PR did some research and came up with the top 15 worst PR disasters of the are the ones I found most interesting..

#1.  Bridgestone tire (2000)-Bridgestone is a company that supplies tires to different car manufacturers and beginning in 1998 there were reports that the tires were failing, resulting in hundreds of car accidents and over 200 deaths.  This situation wouldn't have exploded if Bridgestone would have admitted that their tires were faulty, but they refused to make any such announcement until 2000 when they were pretty much forced to. The tires were recalled (6.5 million), which was the second largest recall of all time. Just admit your wrongdoings-the public will appreciate it!

#2. Urban Outfitters sells racist board game-Urban Outfitters is known for its apparel, but theres a section of the store that sells funny trinkets and games, one of which was called "Ghettopoly." Ghettopoly was obviously a play on Monopoly and included cards that said "you got your whole neighborhood addicted to crack! collect $50" and "get rich by pimpin hoes, buying stolen property, and getting car jacked!" This board game caused a huge uproar. Obviously people were offended; very bad move on Urban's part.

#3. Jet Blue traps passengers on planes- In 2007, JetBlue had nine flights scheduled to take off from JFK when an ice storm came through, causing the flights to be delayed. You'd think an airline would immediately let the passengers de-board the plane and wait comfortably inside the airport until the bad weather passed, but not JetBlue.  JetBlue kept 1,000 passengers on the planes for over 11 hours with little to no food, unpleasant bathroom conditions, and on the runway while an ice storm bombarded the plane.  The passengers said it was "horrific." JetBlue eventually saved their name by drafting a "Passenger's Bill of Rights" but only after they viciously defended their decision immediately following the situation.

#4. Disgusting Domino's- Social media is unarguably one of the greatest advances of our time with the ability to instantly upload videos to YouTube, however, you might want to think twice about ordering from this pizza joint again.  A couple months ago two domino's employees filmed themselves doing REALLY gross things to the food they were preparing (don't eat the italian sandwich again apparently) and then uploaded the video to the web, causing major upset and lots of unhappy customers.  This is pretty bad on the employee's part, but what about the company?  They waited two whole days before making any sort of statement while the video got 1 million views on YouTube.  They eventually issued an apology and fired the two guys  but the images people saw around the world aren't going away any time soon.

#5. ABC's locker room scene.  A year after the Janet Jackson super-bowl fiasco, ABC created a commercial, which aired during Monday Night Football that was high inappropriate for the family-friendly program.  Nicolette Sherdian was shown in the men's locker room in only a towel attempting to seduce Terrell Owens.  Maybe this would have been humorous if only a year earlier the network didn't receive thousands of complaints about Jackson's, umm, lack of clothing.  The FCC was fined for the amount of disappointed fans who called in to complain. Once again, bad move ABC.

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Group work

Here is todays question: Are we too old to tattle tale?

I don't think so.  Not when it comes to your future.

I'm graduating in December and each day leading up to then I have worried and will continue to worry and stress out about passing my classes, getting good grades, finishing my homework and making sure I've got everything in order before the big day comes.  So when someone puts that in jeopardy, it's a little frustrating.  So no, I don't think college students are too old to tell on someone else. 

Working in a group is never a breeze but honestly, how do you handle a hard to work with partner? Do you tell them like it is? Do you give them attitude because you've done the majority of the work and they haven't done jack?  How do you deal with people who aren't willing to contribute to the group and be a team player?  Well, I'm no expert on the subject but after many group projects over the past 4 years have given me a little experience and insight on the subject.  

1. Don't beat around the bush.  If they aren't helping and you're the one doing all the work-confront them in a nice and mature fashion and ask them if they would chip in by doing this, this and this. 
2. Stay on top of things.  Call or text them if you haven't heard how their part of the project is going.  After all, you're getting a grade on it too and want it to be the best it can be. 
3. Offer to help. 
4. If all else fails, talk to someone higher up than you, like a teacher or your boss. 

All of this got me thinking-this isn't an issue that stops after college.  Business professionals undoubtedly face problems like this in the corporate world.  There's a hard-headed co-worker, a lazy co-worker, a "do it all myself" co-worker.  Any industry has problems like these, including the PR world.  Working in groups can be challenging, but as along as you keep calm, keep on top of things and speak your mind you will be able to overcome the difficulties of a group dynamic. 

Sunday, October 10, 2010

My GLAMOROUS work place!

So at work the other day I decided it was time to take pictures and spice up my blog.  Not that my workspace is all that glamorous or exciting, but it's my first real "office" so I take pride in it!  It's nice to have two other interns with me in the conference room in case I have questions or just need a quick break to talk.  My internship is at University Development office and I LOVE it!  My current assignment is to create the 2010 Baylor Christmas Card.  Hope you enjoy my office pics!

This is my temporary desk.  Son, one of the guys who works there with me, is taking a couple weeks off because he's in Chamber and is in charge of lots of stuff going on with Homecoming so I'm using his workspace for the time being.  Usually I bring my laptop to work because the ones UD provides don't really work that well. 

There are three stages a folder goes through: In Design, In Editing, and Final Cut.

Whenever a new job comes in for me to work on my responsibilities are to make the changes the full-time staffers and writers have made, put the updated version with the original file, classify them as complete and drop them off at Eloisa's office. 

My usual workspace.

A fun treat! Dr. Pepper brownies..YUM!

Now you've seen a little bit of what I do every Monday, Wednesday and Friday.  My tasks vary from day to day including: editing and updating 1st call to prayer requests, office tasks, creating and designing logos, and working with CMS.  It's challenging but fun and rewarding.

Monday, September 27, 2010

Small time PR

To me, every time the term "PR" comes to mind I think of New York City, a swanky office building in midtown, a celebrity in trouble and a conference room full of business suits trying to put the pieces back together.  Of course this is just one example of how PR works, but what about people in Texas? Or Oregon?  Sure we have nice offices and high powered executives too, but is PR all about the celebrities and the glam?

According to wikipedia (a reliable source, I'm sure) Public Relations is a field concerned with maintaining public image for high-profile people, commercial businesses and organizations, non-profit associations or programs. Now after many PR classes I know this definition to be true, however, I don't think it's as black and white as that.  For example, my sister started her own photography company a few months ago and has been working to get her name out to a targeted audience, the people of Midland.  In a nutshell, PR is the business in which people work their hardest to ensure that their company's good name is not tarnished and is portrayed in the best light possible. Public Relations Practitioners are hired to make sure their client, a company, has a good relationship with their public, employers, and clients.  But for a smaller company with only one employee how does PR work?

When my sister first started her company here is what she did. 
1-came up with a company name, Wynne Elder Photography
2-hired a graphic designer to create a logo for her new company 
3-did free sessions for friends in order to establish relationships and references
4-created a website with tons of information about her services, examples, past clients, calendar for availability, and most importantly a section about herself, which reassures her future clients she is legit and eager to please 
5-used social media to promote her new website, including twitter, facebook, her personal blog, and word of mouth
6-had any of her friends who uploaded her pictures to facebook give her credit underneath the photo so people who saw and liked the picture knew who took it and where to find her
7-created a blog about her sessions, her passion, and everything else any future client needed to know

Wynne did a great job of promoting her company on her own, maintaining a good public image, giving the public a clear understanding of how her business works. Wynne didn't have any PRPs working to promote her new company and she also didn't have a crisis that needed to be worked out.  She was simply using PR 101 to reach out to her targeted audience combined with more modern modes of PR such as social media outlets.  PR isn't always about maintaining crisis situations, it can be about small companies getting started, big companies maintaining a good reputation, and even celebrities dilemmas. PR isn't always black or white.