Saturday, November 13, 2010

President's Word

By: Pam Nulman, APR, CPRC

As the holidays approach and we easily get caught up in a haze of frenetic activity, I hope you will join me in stepping back and finding a moment of peace and serenity to reflect on what you’re thankful for this year. 

Although my list could go on and on, here is my top 10 list of what I’m thankful for today, and every day. 

I’m thankful for:

•  My Mom, Audrey Scott, a beautiful woman who taught me how to read and write by the age of four and without a doubt set me on the path to a career in public relations. 

•  My children, Joseph and Deni, who inspire me daily.  They make me laugh, occasionally cry, and have given me a lifetime of wonderful memories with many more still to come. 

•  My husband, Jim, who listens endlessly to my “PR” stories and musings and gives me the greatest gift of always appearing interested. 

•  My friends, including those who have been by my side for decades, as well as those who are new in my life.  You lift me up and keep me grounded at the same time.

•  The blessing of living in a country where a young woman can go to college, pursue a career and know the sky’s the limit and dreams do come true. 

• The many mentors who have helped me on my professional journey.  You know who you are and I’ll never forget your collective wisdom, patience and support.  You celebrated each success and wouldn’t let me wallow when I stumbled, telling me to dust off my boots and get back to work.

•  A strong body and tenacious spirit which allow me to get up each day and embrace new opportunities and challenges.

•  The opportunity to embrace the spiritual faith of my choice and share it publicly.

•  The gift of technology which has the power to bring us together as one human race, yet cautions us to understand that with power comes responsibility.

•  My colleagues on the FPRA Southwest Florida chapter leadership team who work tirelessly and with giving hearts each and every day. 

"As we express our gratitude, we must never forget that the highest appreciation is not to utter words, but to live by them."   - John Fitzgerald Kennedy

Happy Thanksgiving!

FPRA December Business Meeting

"Lessons Learned from Starbucks and the Energizer Bunny"

On Monday, December 6, you will hear from one of our area’s most amazing and effective leaders! Sarah Owen, Chief Executive Officer of Community Cooperative Ministries, will share her insight into business, public relations and leadership principles that she has learned this year from Starbucks and her experience with the Energizer Keep Going Hall of Fame. In addition to being CEO of Cooperative Community Ministries, Sarah Owen is a social service entrepreneur. Her journey into the non-profit arena came by way of a career in public relations and corporate communications. Sarah has worked in investor relations, public relations and corporate communications for publicly traded companies on the New York Stock Exchange as well as private companies throughout the Southeastern United States. God has blessed Sarah with the opportunity to work at CCMI, and she humbly acknowledges that He equips her to carry out her responsibilities.

ood Drive

In the spirit of giving during this holiday season we will be holding a food drive at our December meeting to help CCMI meet the growing needs of the community. Please bring a non-perishable food item to donate to this worthwhile cause

Click here to register now!

Congratulations to Melissa Simontis, APR!

Kudos to Melissa Simontis, APR, for successfully passing the Examination for Accreditation in Public Relations and becoming an Accredited public relations practitioner. She is the development director for PACE Center for Girls, Lee County. Melissa joins an elite group of approximately 6,000 public relations professionals worldwide who have achieved Accreditation, including 26 from our chapter of FPRA.

The exam tests the candidate’s knowledge, skills and abilities in the practice of public relations, and the preparation is a time consuming challenge of reading, memorizing and studying. Achieving the APR designation is evidence of Melissa’s high degree of professional expertise and is a testament to her personal determination. Congratulations, Melissa!

For those of you who are considering making this commitment to your professional development, it may interest you to learn that the APR status is recognized not only by FPRA, but also PRSA and seven other PR associations. And, perhaps more importantly, an accredited practitioner generally earns 20 percent more than non-Accredited members. If you want to join this elite group, contact credential co-chairs Mary Briggs, APR, CPRC at or Kara Winton, APR, CPRC at

November Meeting Recap: Ken Sneeden and Kirsten O’Donnell Share Tips on Making Your Video Stand Out

Guest speakers Ken Sneeden and Kirsten O'Donnell. 
At FPRA’s November 2 meeting, guest speakers Kirsten O’Donnell and Ken Sneeden shared tips and techniques for video production. 

As Director of Public Relations at Goodwill Industries of Southwest Florida, Kirsten utilizes video for many purposes from education to promotion online. She also has professional experience in broadcast news. One of her most successful recent campaigns for Goodwill was the “So You Think You’re Thrifty” contest. She emphasized that while a photo is worth a thousand words… video, at 29 frames per second at just two minutes of length is worth 3,480,000 words!

With the availability of a wide variety of cameras and software, you can either do it yourself or go pro, depending on the audience, budget, medium, degree of artistic freedom, and the longevity desired. Cameras range from hundreds of dollars to thousands, depending on the quality. Software can be a simple as Windows Movie Maker or professional quality such as Final Cut Pro or Adobe Premiere Pro.
Doing it yourself is ideal for audiences already familiar with your organization or purpose, when you do not need to build credibility. By doing it yourself, you have a smaller budget, complete control (but lower quality), short and trendy format, and it’s easy to use for web, social media and podcasting.
You should hire a pro when approaching a new audience where credibility is not established yet, and you want to have a longer-lasting video with more return on investment. You’ll need a larger budget and will have less creative control, but will create a broadcast quality video with better effects.

Some additional tips that Kirsten shared for shooting an effective video:
  • Be a storyteller. A good story can go a long way. 
  • Have a shot list ready. 
  • Take more footage than you think you need, including different angles of the same thing. Rule of thumb: 10 minutes footage for 1 minute edited. 
  • Begin with an establishing shot to set the mood and begin the story. 
  • “Cover it up” – talking heads are boring. Edit video over talking. 
  • Keep it simple in terms of special effects – just because you can doesn’t mean you should use all those cool editing tricks. 
  • Consider video without video – use photos, music, video effects to create animation. There are some simple online services for this: Animoto, Vuvox, One True Media. 
Ken Sneeden is an award-winning former journalist and television station executive. He’s been in the business of professional video and multimedia production at his company Ken Sneeden & Associates since 1991. Ken shared a professional’s perspective on video production.

Some of the new developments in video production are that HD (high definition) is more commonplace with a 16 to 9 ratio. The old format is SD (standard definition) a 4 to 3 ratio. Sometimes, he still creates both formats depending on where they might be used.

The newest development is BluRay. It’s the highest quality you can get. HD is condensed on DVD, but is better on BluRay for a real wow factor. However, the user must have a BluRay player to view it.

If you want to shoot fairly good quality video, try a DSLR (digital single lens reflex) camera with a tripod. With newer models, HD quality is built-in. This type of camera is good for beauty and contrast. However, they’re not as good for action, moving subjects, panning and zooming.

Ken also discussed length of video. With shorter audience attention spans, videos are becoming shorter, too. Old corporate videos would generally range from 7-10 minutes. Now they are 4-6 minutes, and no more than 2 minutes for the web. Production time has also decreased due to the newer technology – but when working with the pros be sure to allow about 30-45 days, including scheduling, planning, scripting, approvals, shooting and editing.

Friday, November 12, 2010

Local Image Awards 2011

This month, the Local Image 2011 team wants you to really explore some of the categories you can enter. Most people think of the big stuff – promotional/marketing campaigns, special events, internal campaigns, etc. But you may not realize that you can also enter a poster or calendar, news release, written speech, specialty item, electronic communications (including blogs, e-mail, newsletters and surveys), brochure, website or even a presentation.

We point this out because the feedback from many people on why they don’t enter is because the process is difficult and time-consuming…and yes, it can be challenging for large-scale projects. But you can also break larger projects up into small, more manageable pieces. Since most of these projects are smaller in scope, entering your work in the “tools of the trade” categories B and C may be less overwhelming, especially to someone who has never submitted anything. This may end up being your formula for success!

So, think about all the categories when looking over your project list and see what sparks your imagination!

Note to students Students can enter a written speech, news release, position paper or computer-generated communication like a website or PowerPoint. You can also enter any other category in the other professional divisions if you have something that doesn’t fit in the student division. Just think how great it would be to tell future interviewers that part of your body of work won an award at a local, or possibly state level. That would definitely set you apart from the crowd and help jump-start your career!

“Action is the foundational key to all success.” - Pablo Picasso

Member Spotlight: Victoria B. Moreland

Victoria B. Moreland joined the Lee County Port Authority as the department director of public affairs in May 2007. The public affairs department is responsible for the promotion of Southwest Florida International Airport and Page Field General Aviation Airport though media relations and public information/marketing communications including special events, community relations programs, corporate citizenship and employee communications. The department also oversees the production of advertising and promotional materials, manages the Art in Flight program and maintains the airport's Web site.

Moreland has 34 years of experience in the aviation industry. Prior to joining the Port Authority, Moreland was the Vice President of Planning with Spirit Airlines. She has held senior management positions in marketing, public relations, airport administration, government affairs, route selection and strategic planning for Spirit Airlines, Emerald Airlines and Air New England.

Moreland is a member of the American Association of Airport Executives (AAAE) and the Southwest Florida Chapter of the Florida Public Relations Association (FPRA). She served on the Southwest Florida Chapter of FPRA board as treasurer from 2007-2009 and as team leader of the Local Image Awards in 2009-2010 and 2010-2011. Moreland was awarded the 2010 Chapter Member of the Year from the Southwest Florida Chapter of FPRA for her work and contribution to the chapter.

Counselors’ Network Winter Symposium set to be magical

This year’s Counselors’ Network Winter Symposium is being held January 20-22, 2011 at the spectacular Lowe’s Portofino Bay Hotel at Universal Studios in Orlando. While speakers are still being confirmed, a behind the scenes peek into the Wizarding World of Harry Potter is rumored to be on the agenda.

Hotel reservations must be made by December 30th, 2010 to obtain a magically low rate secured for this event. Call: (866) 360-7395.

Counselors’ Network is currently open to any Universally Accredited member in good standing of FPRA who is actively engaged in providing counseling service, either as a full-time principal, officer, partner, or employee of a public relations firm, corporation, organization, or agency, and who has been in a counseling capacity for at least three years and has ten years of public relations experience.

Take note though, beginning November 1, 2011, membership in Counselors’ Network will be restricted to FPRA members who are CPRC’s (Certified Public Relations Counselors). Now may be the perfect time to pursue this additional level of credentialing for PR professionals. Contact credentialing co-chairs Mary Briggs at or Kara Winton at to learn more about the CPRC process.

December Tidbits

Have a PR Tip to Share?

Whether you’ve been in the public relations field for one year or 30; you have a resource tip that is invaluable. Generally it is a website, but it may be a free application; a social media group, page, or hint; a book or other resource. We would like share one or two tips a month with members in “Tidbits”. Send your tidbits to Kate Gooderham and please mark that they are tidbits.

Tidbit 1 - Submitted by Karen Ryan, APR, CPRC provides permanent hosting of your media releases absolutely free! Please note that the free service, as with many free posting services, include advertisements posted on your media release and you have no choice of the products or services that are advertised. You can, for a fee, enroll in the Add Eliminator Unlimited Plan. Even if you don’t post a release, there are great media release tips on the site.

Want to have your media release evaluated for marketing effectiveness? Visit

Tidbit 2 - Submitted by Laura Puerto

Two words can save you time, stress and money! That’s right! Google Alerts allow you to stay on top of just about anything your heart desires. These e-mail alerts are simple to set up and are free! Based on your topic(s), Google Alerts can track the web, blogs and more on a once-a-day, once-a-week or as-it-happens basis. Google Alerts make tracking media impressions, keeping tabs on the competition or just hearing the latest gossip on your favorite star a snap! To sign up, visit

Calendar of Events

Upcoming Events 2011 

In the coming year give yourself the gift of enhancing your skills and expanding your professional network. Add participating in the numerous FPRA opportunities available in 2011 to your New Year’s resolutions. Here’s a sampling of what’s in store.

Internship Opportunity

BIG ARTS Sanibel is looking for a part-time intern for its Marketing Department. Marketing duties can be tailored to the applicant’s strengths, however, we are in need of help with press releases, feature articles, photography and graphic support. Prefer experience working with Photoshop and InDesign. We are looking for someone to work 10 to 20 hours. Learn more about us at Contact: Cathy Paus Marketing and Creative Director. Email: Phone: 239-472-9705