Fox29 Anchor Dawn Timmeney Brings National Attention

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FOX29 Anchor Dawn Timmeney recently was mentioned on the national TV news trade Web site, TV Spy. Just not for the typical reasons the site mentions TV news — like a job switch or a ratings boost.

Timmeney was anchoring the news on a recent night, when her phone rang, on-air. Turns out, she made an honest mistake that many of us make – she didn’t realize her cell phone ringer was erroneously turned to “on”.

The story did not stop there. The caller – Timmeney’s 14-year-old daughter Oona – wrote an apology note to the station’s news director, so her mom would not get into trouble.

The note read: “Dear Mr. Driscoll: I’m so sorry I called my mom during the news. I was just calling to say goodnight because I haven’t seen her all week.”

Adds the Fox29 Web site: “In the end, Dawn’s boss thought the note was the sweetest thing, and Dawn looks forward to silencing her phone in the future!”

Link to TV Spy Story Here.

The Power of Data for Storytelling

datapicData journalism is the fastest growing area of reporting, transforming the way journalists do their jobs and the way companies communicate their stories. In this new environment, companies must learn how to better articulate their narratives, understand the difference between good and bad data, and uncover the most compelling data from their experiences serving customers and growing their businesses.

The Power of Data for Storytelling brings to Philadelphia four of the nation’s top data journalists to share their views on how they report, visualize, and use data to tell their stories.

Join moderator Greg Matusky as he interviews:

  • Steve Lohr, Author and Technology Reporter, New York Times
  • Frank Bi, Data Journalist, Forbes
  • Paul Cheung, Director of Interactive and Digital News Production, Associated Press
  • Erika Owens, Program Manager, Knight-Mozilla Opennews

WHO SHOULD ATTEND
C-LEVEL • DIRECTORS OF COMMUNICATIONS/PUBLIC RELATIONS/MARKETING • MARKETING DECISION MAKERS

WHAT YOU WILL LEARN
HOW STORYTELLING IS BEING TRANSFORMED THROUGH DATA • WHAT KIND OF DATA REPORTERS VALUE • WHAT IS GOOD DATA VERSUS BAD DATA • HOW REPORTERS FIND DATA AND CONVERT IT INTO A STORY • WHAT ROLE YOUR COMPANY PLAYS IN REPORTING DATA TO THE MEDIA

This is a free event hosted by Gregory FCA.
Date and Time: June 4, 2015 – 5-7PM
Location: 3260 South Street, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
Register now, here!

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Careers 101: The Difference a Decade Makes

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Meredith Z. Avakian-Hardaway (third from left) with the Temple PRSSA Executive Board at Careers 101.

Register Today for PPRA’s 10th Annual Careers 101

One decade ago, I jumped on the Broad Street Line with several other members of our PRSSA “e-board” and left Temple University’s Main Campus to attend PPRA’s Careers 101 event for students and young professionals.

As we walked into the building at U Arts, I can remember how nervous we all were.  This was our first professional event, where we tried our best to look and act the part. In retrospect, we truly knew little about PR…and being professional, for that matter.  We didn’t know how agency work differed from corporate or nonprofit work. We walked in as PR “newbies” and walked out with our first real PR contacts. (Fun fact: One of these contacts is now a past PPRA president and the other is running for mayor of Philadelphia.)

If any of us doubted whether we picked the right [PR] major, Careers 101 somehow miraculously assured us that we had in fact made the right decision to go into this fast-paced and ever-changing field of writing, creativity and grit.  We wanted to share this experience with dozens of our classmates.  Therefore, on behalf of our PRSSA chapter, I emailed PPRA Executive Director Denise Downing and, should the event ever be held again, offered to host it at Temple University.

Not only was the event brought to Temple, it remained there for three years before moving to PECO for another three years.  Then, after speaking at a Drexel PRSSA meeting, their chapter reached out to me and offered to host the event.  Needless to say, the event then went to Drexel, where it was held for two years.  Now, the 10th Annual Careers 101 will be held at The Liacouras Center at Temple University, where my career started a decade ago partially as a result of this wonderful event.

As such, I have participated in the event every year since its inception, as an attendee, PRSSA president, College Relations Committee chair, panelist, networking volunteer, resume critique volunteer and now in my capacity as president-elect. It has been an honor and pleasure to watch this event grow and flourish. Each year there is a different angle or twist.  This year, in honor of Careers 101’s 10th anniversary and PPRA’s 70th anniversary, the panelists are all past presidents of PPRA and are some of the top PR pros in Philadelphia and beyond.

PPRA’s College Relations Committee has worked hard to put together a thoughtful program that somehow adds an element to one-up years passed.  Over the years, thanks to the honest feedback of the students and young professionals, as well as input from past panelists and university/college faculty and professors who have supported the event, changes have been made to improve the event for anyone involved.  For example, in its first year, there were only a handful of professionals in attendance, which resulted in a half hour wait for students to get their turn to talk with them.  Event attendees can now expect to network with up to a few dozen professionals in attendance.

The Committee wanted to come up with something else new and special for the 10th Careers 101, so this year’s attendees can look forward to getting their professional headshots taken for their LinkedIn profiles.   Also, a number of PR professionals are raffling off their time for shadow days, networking lunches and informational interviews.  The access to high-caliber professionals is a tremendous value to students and young professionals alike.  Of course, what’s Careers 101 without a resume critique?  That must-have bonus will be available again this year.

If you are a student or young professional considering going into PR, this event is for you. Your path to internships, mentors, professional contacts and maybe even employment opportunities, it all starts here.  If you are a PR professional and you have interns and/or young employees, this is an event they will benefit from…and where you might be able to find your next interns!

Additionally, I would be remiss if I did not mention the 2015 Dr. Jean Brodey Student Achievement Award.  This award honors a college junior or senior who has exhibited outstanding professional promise in the field of public relations, has an excellent academic track record and contributes to his or her community. Any PPRA member or internship supervisor in the Philadelphia region may submit nominations for the award. Self-nominations are welcome. The winner receives a commemorative plaque and a $250 cash prize.

To learn more about the PPRA Dr. Jean Brodey Student Achievement Award or the PPRA President’s Fast-Track Award, which honors recognizes an up-and-coming professional who has contributed greatly to the organization, the profession and the community,visit:
https://dl.dropboxusercontent.com/u/5891762/2015%20Awards%20Information.pdf.

See you at Careers 101 on April 1!  Remember, your career is no joke.

Meredith Z. Avakian-Hardaway is President-Elect of the Philadelphia Public Relations Association and Director of Communications and Marketing at the Philadelphia Bar Association.  Follow Meredith @MZApoetry on Twitter and connect on LinkedIn at https://www.linkedin.com/in/meredithavakian.

The Inside Story of DO|AC

DOACThe Inside Story of DO|AC held last week was an anticipated program for PPRA members. Atlantic City, a destination for tourists and a home away from home for some PPRA members went through some major shakeups at the end of 2014. Many members asked “What is Atlantic City going to do?” prior to the presentation and speakers from the Atlantic City Alliance did not disappoint.

Jeff Guaracino (Executive Director), Nicole Cashman (Public Relations) and Melanie Sole (Public Relations) provided PPRA members with an in-depth power point presentation that promoted the positive of Atlantic City and how the Atlantic City Alliance was the reinvention of the city’s tourism and marketing campaigns. While Atlantic City produced $2.5 billion in gaming revenue last year and can fill 15,000 rooms on a weekend, the Atlantic City Alliance’s goal is to attract the leisure tourist to the entertainment capital of the Jersey Shore.

In 2014 alone, the Atlantic City Alliance had:

  • 500+ media trips through FAM tours or visiting journalists
  • Good Morning America
  • Jimmy Kimmel Live
  • Philadelphia and New York Advertising
  • 13,000 radio ads
  • The Miss America Pageant’s return to Atlantic City
  • Two free concerts on the beach that attracted more than 20,000 attendees
  • The DO|AC experience on wheels campaign
  • Toll Free Tuesday
  • Return customer rates increasing to 68%

While last year’s destination marketing campaign led to an impressive roster of placements and content integration, the audience asked what is next in 2015? Jeff Guaracino said they had no idea and that the next 30 days will be eye opening as the state has sent in emergency managers to evaluate how to fix the issues in Atlantic City. The Atlantic City Alliance staying true to their message “promote the positive” is focused on summer and Memorial Day Weekend. Nicole Cashman and Melanie Sole applauded Jeff and told the audience it’s amazing to work with and have a boss or client who has such optimism and drive for their organization.

To our tourism neighbor at the Jersey Shore, we are rooting for you and thank you for sharing The Inside Story of DO|AC.

Jade Barnes is the Marketing Coordinator for The Shops at Liberty Place and a proud Atlantic City native. While handling all of the traditional and digital marketing for The Shops, Jade runs all of the events from concept to execution. While writing her own personal blog, Jade works with Femme & Fortune an online magazine for ambitious women and the Temple Women’s Network. Connect with her on Twitter and LinkedIn.

PPRA Content Marketing Luncheon Recap

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The panel from left to right: Dave Armon, Chief Executive Officer of Brand.com, Kim Harmsen, Vice President of Gregory FCA and Joshua Palau, Senior Director of Digital Communications and Social Media at Comcast.

The worlds of earned and paid media are colliding and we have to brace ourselves for impact by learning the value of tactics like native advertising, content marketing and sponsored content. At the latest PPRA luncheon, “WARNING: Communication Turbulence Ahead. Content May Shift” experts from Brand.com, Comcast and Gregory FCA spoke on the topic.

Gregg Feistman, professor at Temple University with more than 30 years of public relations experience, moderated the conversation.

Kim Harmsen, Vice President of Gregory FCA, started off the set of three presentations with a look at the content marketing efforts her agency employs for its client, Penn Mutual.  Harmsen highlighted the different areas that Gregory FCA focuses on for Penn Mutual including social media, a blog and press releases. Her team focuses on communicating a corporate narrative across these channels while displacing myths about life insurance. Examples of these myths are that millennials aren’t interested in purchasing life insurance and that the field is not female-friendly. The team at Gregory FCA also works to have Penn Mutual’s content published elsewhere, like insurance trades.

Dave Armon, CEO of Brand.com, delved into how his company works with both brands and publishers to create a harmony where the two intersect. He mentioned examples like Help A Reporter Out and ProfNet as well as an instance where Netflix bought a pull out spread in the New York Times to advertise Orange is the New Black using the advertorial method. Armon spoke on the importance of labeling sponsored content. Many consumers may feel deceived if they realize the words they are reading from a publication were paid to be placed there. However, studies show that as long as the content is labeled honestly and it reads well, individuals will view it as a credible source.

Joshua Palau, Senior Director of Digital Communications and Social Media at Comcast, showed the luncheon group the website that Comcast uses to create and share its own content. Palau noted how it can be difficult to get the right messages and voice across through third party media outlets, so websites like that are crucial for a brand. He also pointed out how even Google is trying to blur the line between paid and organic reach by trying to get users to click on advertised content at the top of their search feeds. Comcast’s website is the place that outlets like the Verge and Tech Crunch are going to get news for their own sites, showing how useful brand journalism has become for all involved.

Takeaways:

  • Use content marketing to communicate your narrative
  • Clearly label sponsored content to maintain honesty and credibility
  • Publishers are starved for revenue, they are more than open to working with brands

How do you see the intersection of earned and paid media impacting the field of public relations? Share your thoughts about the pros and cons of sponsored content, native advertising and content marketing below.

This post was written by London Faust. London is an Account Representative at Bellevue Communications Group, a public relations firm specializing in media relations, crisis communications and issue management. She is forever #TempleMade,class of 2014. Follow her personal ramblings on Twitter at @londonfaust or her professional doings at @BellevuePRPhl.