Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Image Awards to Highlight May Meeting

Mark your calendar for Monday, May 2nd and plan to celebrate with this year's outstanding Image Awards winners.

Join us as we announce this year's Image winners and then hear from an award winning PR professional on pitching the media and executing a successful media relations program.  This presentation will be sure to whet your appetite for our FPRA media breakfast to be held on Tuesday, June 7th.

This jam-packed meeting will have a few surprises as we celebrate the best of public relations in Southwest Florida. This isn't going to be your ordinary luncheon business meeting - just Imagine the Possibilities.  We are! 

Event Details
Imagine the Possibilities:  Image Awards & Pitching the Media
Monday, May 2, 2011
11:15 a.m. - 1:00 p.m.
Broadway Palm Dinner Theatre
$20 for members
$25 for guests
$10 for students

Register today. Click here.

President's Word: Fast Track Your Career With Real World Leadership

By: Pamela Nulman, APR, CPRC, 

"Now, here, you see, it takes all the running you can do, to keep in the same place.  If you want to get somewhere else, you must run at least twice as fast as that."  - Through the Looking Glass by Lewis Carroll.

Are you looking to fast track your career?  Learning new skills, especially leadership skills, is one of the most direct routes to career advancement. 

Involvement in FPRA allows communication professionals to run twice as fast, while offering an unparalleled opportunity to develop leadership skills which are readily transferable to today's work environment.  Assuming a leadership position allows you to stay in the forefront of emerging industry issues; learn to negotiate and build consensus; hone professional and interpersonal skills; and build relationships throughout our communities. 

We are now accepting nominations for the 2011/12 Southwest Florida Chapter of FPRA board of directors. This is your chance to get involved and move your career to the fast lane.  Carla Ulakovic will lead the chapter next year as president and I will serve as immediate past president.  We will be filling the following board positions this year:

VP of Communications
VP of Community Relations
VP of Professional Development
VP of Member Relations

Board members are voting members, are expected to attend monthly board meetings and are responsible for the strategic direction of the chapter.

We also have positions available on the extended leadership positions. These positions provide leadership for the tactical hands-on activities of the chapter.  Want to learn a specific new skill?  One of these positions might be just right for you. Leadership team members are expected to attend quarterly board meetings.

Open leadership team positions include:

Credentialing Chair
Hospitality Chair
Image Chair
Newsletter Chair
Media Relations Chair
Programs Chair
Social Media Chair
Special Projects Chair
Website Chair

If you are interested in joining the FPRA leadership team or have questions about involvement and requirements, please contact our Kathleen Taylor, APR.  As Past President, Kathleen is chairing this year's nomination committee.  All nominations must be submitted to Kathleen by April 15.  You can reach her at kathleendtaylor@gmail.com.

In short, to get involved is to get ahead, making FPRA an investment that pays dividend.  See you at the leadership table next year.

Member Spotlight: Diana Sabino

Congratulations to FPRA leadership team member, Diana Sabino, on her recent promotion with Southwest Florida College.

Diana is now responsible for all Internet Marketing at a corporate level for SFC Acquisition Corporation, which includes 15 campuses in total and encompasses Platt College, Southwest Florida College, Oklahoma Health Academy and the Institute of Interior Design.  Diana will now add a fairly extensive travel schedule to her already busy job, but is committed to remaining part of FPRA's leadership team.

State Conference Scholarships Available

The Southwest Florida Chapter is offering a limited number of full and partial scholarships to attend this year's annual conference, August 7-10 at the Naples Grand Beach Resort.

Explore the Evolution of Public Relations while networking with 200-plus colleagues.  Hear from top PR professionals with MacDonald's; the Department of Homeland Security; Universal Studios; CSX Railways; Triple AAA; and many more. 

To apply for a scholarship submit two or three paragraphs on why you need a scholarship and how attending the conference will help you professionally.  Applications are due by April 20 and should be sent to Pam Nulman.  Scholarship recipients will be announced at the May 2 meeting.

Learn more about PR 2011 The Evolution of Public Relations.

March Meeting Recap: Brand Your PR Firm – and Yourself!

Submitted by: Kerri Goldsmith

On March 1st, members and guests of the Southwest Florida Chapter of the Florida Public Relations Association learned how to take a brand beyond the logo and “walk the talk.” Christine Wright-Isak, Ph.D. shared her insights about branding and how to apply strategies for ourselves, our businesses and our clients.
Dr. Wright-Isak is a marketing and branding consultant and a Professor of Marketing at Florida Gulf Coast University’s Lutgert College of Business. Her experience includes work at Young & Rubicam and on well-known brands such as Hanes, Champion, and Colgate.

When branding a professional public relations practice, Dr. Wright-Isak recommends doing so for yourself as an individual, too. Consider the what, why, when and how?

 WHAT is branding? It’s many things… a name, color, logo, marquee, music tag, reputation, history, relationship, commitment and reassurance. Consumers are overloaded with decisions each day, and trustworthy brands facilitate decisions.

 WHY is branding important? In addition to facilitating consumer decisions, it can make your area of expertise or your values clear. Sometimes others don’t know you as you want to be known. If you don’t clearly communicate what you and your firm are about, your competitors will. Consider branding a practice cost that is an investment, not just overhead.

 WHEN and HOW should branding be implemented? It can be done incrementally, as time and budget allow. Once you identify what makes you unique and valued, focus on intangible brand aspects, especially those that connect strongly to the user’s values. For example, Disney’s brand is all about the magic of childhood. Each initiative is branded with a consistent look and message. Live your values. A journal is a great way to reinforce doing just that.

Some strategic steps to follow for any size brand would include:
  •  Inventory perceptions of what your brand means to others. Recognize all constituents.
  •  Research what promise you can keep well. Define it for all constituents and get feedback.
  •  Communicate that promise clearly and then keep it with your actions.
  •  Position to differentiate yourself from perceived alternatives. Consistently express your point of difference in all communications.
  •  Engage specific, strategic defined audiences.
  •  Continue to “make deposits” through improvements, public relations to educate constituents, promotions to add value, and advertising to create/clarify the meaning of your brand.
  •  Maintain your brand power by “minimizing withdrawals’. Brand reputational equity accrues influence leverage, is a platform for reputation management during troubled times, and builds a stockpile of trustworthiness.
“Prepare for your own surprising future, and then it will come to you.”

Credentialing Corner

By Kate Gooderham, APR, CPRC

Most scientists think differently from most public relations professionals.  Those of us who have them as clients or target audiences already know this.  The trick is how to communicate with them.  I recently read two books that were helpful in that regard.  Both were written several years ago, but the concepts are relevant.  Since they are written for scientists, you have to think about what they say in reverse!

The most user friendly was a “A Scientist’s Guild to Talking with the Media” by Richard Hayes and Daniel Grossman.    It was both fascinating and helpful.  There are concepts that are very difficult for scientists like “balance and fairness.”  Scientists often are absorbed with the facts while the journalist will be looking for the message.  Scientists are precise people; certain terminology that we think is general in its usage has very specific meaning to them.  As we understand these ways of thinking, it will be easier for us to communicate with them and to help them communicate with the media.

The second book is “How NASA Builds Teams” by Charles Pellerin.  The emphasis in this book is how and why science teams fail.  What is helpful to communicators are his description of personalities of teams.  Most of us would fall into the green (cultivating) or yellow (including) culture, while most scientists would fall into the blue (visioning) with a few in orange (directing).  In addition to helping understand scientists, this book helps analyze why teams of any emphasis could fail.  The book also allows free online team and individual assessments.

Sunday, March 20, 2011

A Picture's Worth A Thousand Words

Check out these new member benefits now available through the state association!

Add your photo to the FPRA Directory.

All members can now upload a photo of themselves to correspond with their contact information in the FPRA Directory. To do so, simply log into the FPRA site and then go to the "Active Members" page. There, in the right-hand column, you will find an option to: Upload Member Photo. Click this button and then follow the steps to upload your photo. Once your photo has been uploaded, it will appear in the right-hand column of your "Active Members" page, as well as in the directory.

FPRA offers new opportunity to promote your business. 

If you're a freelancer, or work for, or own an agency ... you can now advertise your PR services on the new FPRA Public Service Directory, found on the home page. The cost to be in this directory for one full year (12 months) is only $25. Once the Directory is populated it will be prominently displayed on the FPRA homepage, accessible to the public. What is NOT accessible to the public is this offer. Only FPRA members can list their services in this Directory. To take advantage of this member-only benefit, click here to get started.