Thursday, April 14, 2011

May 2nd Meeting Set to Celebrate, Inspire and Surprise!

You won't want to miss the May 2nd meeting which promises to be full of surprises as we celebrate the very best in public relations with the presentation of our annual Image Awards. Join us as we toast award winners and celebrate our profession.

Following the celebration with our Image Award winners hear from Susan Bennett, APR, CPRC, a 20-year public relations and marketing professional who will share:

"Pet Peeves of Journalists:  How to pitch (and not pitch) a story."

Having successfully pitched literally hundreds of stories throughout her career, Susan will share her tips for successfully pitching journalists and landing stories for your clients or organizations. Susan's insights will be an introduction and prelude to FPRA's popular media breakfast to be held on Tuesday, June 7. 
Susan has earned more than 200 awards for her work, including 180 from the Florida Public Relations Association. She is the recipient of FPRA’s highest honor, the Dick Pope All-Florida Golden Image Award for the best public relations campaign in Florida (for Southwest Florida Addiction Services). Prior to founding her own company, Susan was Marketing Director of The News-Press and served on the launch team of USA TODAY. Susan is a trustee and past chairman of the Southwest Florida Community Foundation. Susan has earned a Bachelor of Science degree in journalism and a Master of Arts degree in mass communications from the University of Florida. She also is certified in Government and Foundation Grant Writing and is a registered fund-raising consultant with the State of Florida.

Meeting Details:
Celebrate the 2011 Image Awards & "Pet Peeves of Journalists when Pitching Stories"
Monday, May 2, 2011
11:15 a.m. - 1:00 p.m.
Lunch meeting
Broadway Palm Dinner Theatre
Fort Myers
$25 for guests
$20 for members
$10 for students

Click here to register.

President's Word: Sticks and Stones

By Pam Nulman, APR, CPRC

"Sticks and Stones may break my bones, but words will never hurt me."

As a young girl growing up in the late 60s and early 70s when a revoluntionary invention - disposable diapers - changed the face of parenting forever, I had the distinct pleasure of being called Pampers more than once by my peers.

My retort to my taunters was frequently a quick "Sticks and Stones may break my bones, but words will never hurt me" while standing with my hands on my hips and an indignant look on my face, but the reality was those words did hurt. The scars apparently ran deep in my case because when my children were born two decades later they only wore Huggies disposable diapers. I could never bring myself to buy Pampers, even when they were cheaper.

As public relations professionals we have a vested interest and considerable responsibility in the words we use as part of our every day work product. We use words, backed by actions, to build and sustain relationships critical to our success. Words, and the context in which they are used, are critical in achieving the objectives we set forth in communication plans implemented on behalf of our employers and/or clients.

Operating in a digital era has significantly escalated the need for prudence and integrity in selecting the words we use to achieve our goals.  In this age of quick and easy access to posting comments and responses via the abundance of social media channels at our disposal, we all need to become more aware of the power of words and the impact they can have on those who hear them and read them. This rings true from both a positive, and a negative, perspective.

Words are powerful. Use them wisely. The Power of Words.


May Member Spotlight: Rochelle Cherniawski

As the Communications Coordinator for Shell Point Retirement Community, Rochelle Cherniawski facilitates all internal communications among the population of more than 2,200 residents and 850 employees. Rochelle serves as the Assistant Editor for the community’s monthly magazine, Shell Point Life, which is distributed to each resident as well as numerous “key influencers” throughout Southwest Florida. Rochelle also oversees the production of several organizational newsletters. Three of those monthly newsletters are targeted to residents in Shell Point’s assisted living facilities and skilled nursing facility. She coordinates the production of a monthly member newsletter for the Shell Point Golf Club and organizes the production of a monthly newsletter for members of Shell Point’s Discovery Club. She also manages the production of the monthly employee newsletter, Currents. In addition to her editorial roles, Rochelle serves as a news anchor on Shell Point’s daily television program, Shell Point Today.

Rochelle joined the team at Shell Point Retirement Community in August of 2007. Prior to her position at Shell Point, Rochelle was an Account Executive at Campbell-Ewald Advertising in Detroit, where she managed advertising initiatives and direct mail campaigns for the United States Postal Service. She received a Bachelor's of Arts in Advertising from Michigan State University in 2004.

Shell Point Retirement Community is a not-for-profit continuing care retirement community located in Fort Myers. Shell Point has received national accreditation from CARF-CCAC, and is a nationally recognized leader in the retirement industry. The community offers retirement living in a resort-style environment with an 18-hole championship golf course that is open to the public, deep water boating access, and numerous recreational and fitness facilities.

Credentialing Corner

Advice, recommendations and news you can use from the chapter’s seasoned professionals

By Laurel Smith, APR
Gravina, Smith, Matte & Arnold Marketing and Public Relations

Budget advisors recommend tracking your spending to get a handle on your finances. Similarly, tracking your hours at the office can help you do a better job of managing your time.

Most agencies bill for time worked on behalf of clients. Having a system in place to track time, being aware of billable hours and justifying the time spent on specific projects is critical to financial success.

All public relations practitioners – not only those who bill time at agencies – can benefit from tracking their time. Here’s why:
  • Tracking can make you more productive. Seeing how you spend your day can help you focus on what’s important. When you realize it took 45 minutes to scan a newspaper or 30 minutes to finish a phone call, you may reconsider the way you work or appreciate the value of delegation.
  • Tracking can increase your efficiency. Seeing how much time it truly takes to complete a routine task may jolt you into working more quickly or finding a faster way.
  • Tracking increases accountability. It may be valuable to let your supervisor know you spend 25 percent of your time in meetings. When the big boss asks you to coordinate an event, you might choose to share the number of staff hours spent on the last cocktail reception or ribbon cutting.
  • Tracking can increase your sense of accomplishment. It feels a lot like checking things off your to-do list.
The mechanics of time tracking can be as simple as notes jotted on an hourly grid or daily planner or as sophisticated as time-and-billing software. It is the act of tracking that makes you mindful of how you spend your time and what you actually can accomplish during a workday.

Top 11 Reasons to Attend State Conference

Just in case you need a reason to attend FPRA's Annual Conference August 7-11, 2011 at the beautiful Naples Grande Beach Resort, we've pulled together 11 reasons so you have plenty to spare.

1. Learn from the very best in the public relations profession.

2. Network with your professional peers.

3. Be in the know!  Here about the soon-to-be latest trends before they become trends. 

4. Get reenergized and inspired! 

5. Get direct access to some of the most influential people in PR today.

6. Got credentials?  Begin your journey to your APR or CPRC at conference.

7. Receive recognition for your professional accomplishments.  Take home the gold at the annual Golden  Image Awards.

8. Celebrate accomplishments with your peers at the annual President's Luncheon.

9. Enhance the profession.

10. Build your professional library.

11. This year's conference is in our own backyard at the beautiful Naples Grande Resort in our sister city of Naples.