Posted by: Emily | April 8, 2011

Elizabeth Taylor, you will be missed.

As we all know, recently an iconic figure of anyones time, passed away. Elizabeth Taylor is most definately a women to remember. Alexis Merante wrote an awesome blog post about Elizabeth’s life as a legendary figure.

Her Legend Never Dies

23MAR

One of the most iconic figures of many generations past away earlier today.Elizabeth Taylor was much more than a beautiful actress; she was a mother, an activist, and a business women.

It is easy to remember Elizabeth Taylor for her outlandish lifestyle with her many marriages, but her amazing accomplishments with the fight against AIDS are incomparable to anything else in her life.

Elizabeth Taylor died at age 79 from congestive heart failure at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles, said publicist Sally Morrison. She had been hospitalized six weeks ago. She had many health problems throughout her life including appendectomy, a punctured esophagus, and in ’97 a brain tumor.

Her passions were legend. She loved to eat, which led to well-publicized battles with weight over the years; later she wrote a book about weight loss. She loved men, dating many of the world’s richest and most famous, including Frank Sinatra,Henry Kissinger and Malcolm Forbes. Taylor married eight times, including two visits to the altar with Burton.

“I’m more of a man’s woman,” Elizabeth Taylor once admitted. “With men, there’s a kind of twinkle that comes out. I sashay up to a man. I walk up to a woman.”

Taylor had many gay friends and, as the AIDS epidemic grew larger, she lost many of them. In 1985, she became the most prominent celebrity to back what was then a very taboo cause. She agreed to chair the first major AIDS benefit, a fundraising dinner for the nonprofit AIDS Project Los Angeles. Taylor went on to co-found, with Dr. Mathilde Krim, the first national organization devoted to backing AIDS research, the American Foundation for AIDS Research. In 1991 she formed the Elizabeth Taylor AIDS Foundation, which directly supports AIDS education and patient care.

Through her various efforts she was able to raise more than $270 million for AIDS prevention and care.

She was loved by everyone that knew her, and her legend will certainly never die.

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Posted by: Emily | April 7, 2011

Be My Guest!

Toms shoes is an amazing organization that is founded on One for One. Meaning for every pair of Toms shoes that you purchase, they will pay it forward and donate a pair of shoes to a child in need. An amazing story that my fellow classmate Erin McDonough has written a post about!

Taking a Step Into a Better Tomorrow

In today’s society, shoes have become more of a fashion statement than a necessary article of clothing. Shoe fetishes are costing girls across the country hundreds to even thousands of dollars a year. However, what many people don’t know is that there are millions of children in Africa and underdeveloped countries that have never owned a pair of shoes their entire life.  Blake Mycoskie, the founder and chief shoe giver of TOMS Shoes, decided that it was time for something to be done about this. Blake is a true inspiration of selflessness, compassion, and success.

Blake became an entrepreneur right out of college and states that he “lost himself in his pursuit of entrepreneurship.” In 2006, he realized that he was in desperate need of a vacation, leading him to his first trip to Argentina. While there, Blake was introduced to a group of children and learned that they did not own, and had never owned a pair of shoes to protect their feet. He then discovered that there were hundreds more in that country alone who were also without shoes.

Shoes are often times taken for granted. What people don’t realize is that there are multiple dangers and set backs that come with constantly being barefoot. One of the major dangers to being barefoot is podoconiosis– a disease contracted through exposed cuts and scratches that can lead to amputations and even death. Another issue is that most school do not allow children to attend if they are barefoot meaning that the inability to afford shoes is not only physically dangerous, but ruins almost any chance for a better future. This new knowledge gave Blake the idea for a project; he would design a simple pair of shoes and for every pair that was sold, he would give another pair to a child in need. This led to the his slogan: One for One.

The idea of this project soon spread across the country and orders began to pour in. People everywhere became intrigued with this “Shoes for tomorrow project.”  The company has distributed over 400,000 pairs of shoes in the past 4 years to children in need. Not only has Blake changed the lives of children world wide, he has become an icon of goodness, selflessness, and compassion in the business world as well. Well-known companies like Ralph Lauren, and Element Skateboards have now joined the One for One movement.

Blake has set the stage for a better tomorrow world wide, in the business world, and for people’s personal lives as well. Blake saw a problem and decided to step up and move towards change. He left his comfortable life in order to chase an idea. He has attracted people worldwide to the idea of giving while receiving.

Thanks Erin! What a great story!

Posted by: Emily | April 5, 2011

Would you donate a kidney because of Facebook?!

When I think of Facebook, i think of social networking, advertising, and a public relations forum for businesses. Who knew that a simple status update could persuade someone to donate an organ!

According to Ragan’s PR Daily, a few months ago a woman posted a status about her husband needing a kidney transplant and that they needed a kidney with O blood type. She wasnt necessarily asking as in putting an AD in the paper, but was just hoping that somehow her prayer would be answered.

Luckily, a man saw the message and notified her that he would be willing to donate and had the correct blood type. The transplant was successful and both men alright.

Who knew that Facebook could be used for more than talking to your friends, and keeping up to date with local businesses and celebs. Today, social media and the internet can be used for just about anything, even finding an organ donor faster than ever before.

I wonder if this will change the way the waiting list for organs will work?! Could it be the newest and upcoming trend?

Posted by: Emily | April 5, 2011

Emergency Landing

If you were mid flight on a plane, smelled an electrical burning smell and had to do an emergency landing how would you feel? Better yet, if it was your airline what would you do and how would you react?

This past weekend Southwest Airlines had two different planes make emergency landings because of various technical difficulties which they later found out to be subsurface cracks.

A crisis which could have ended very badly for the passengers of the planes can teach PR professionals 3 important lessons.

1. Dont let small problems go, and become bigger ones. It is better to deal with it quickly rather than let the problem grow and become much more severe.

2. Sometimes everything can look fine on the surface or even look like a small unimportant nuisance, but deep down inside there is a more serious problem. It is important to check even the smallest dilemma to make sure that it doesnt lead to bigger issues.

3. Instead of sweeping things under the rug to avoid dealing with them, communicate the problem so that you can control the information being presented to the public. Responding quickly and efficiently will build a positive reputation and trust among your customers.

For more information go to Ragan’s PR Daily

Posted by: Emily | April 4, 2011

How can you be viral?!

We have all seen some of the funniest, scariest and most touching popular videos on youtube. We were either searching and noticed that they had a ton of “views” or friends showed us and we continued to pass the video on via word of mouth or facebook, twitter, etc.

Its important to make the video instantly appealing. It needs to catch the viewers eye instantly and make them want to continue to watch. Most videos that contain a cute infant, animals or that the people do something stupid will get a bunch of hits because they are funny or catch some kind of emotion.

The first viral video that is one of my favorites is called “Kittens: Inspired by kittens!”

This video has over 12 million views on youtube and I personally enjoy this video because of the little girls voice. She is so completely innocent and thinks that she is making this great video about kittens and it isnt only emotionally adorable because of the little girl, but also hilarious because of the sound effects that she comes up with for all of the pictures.

The second video I chose is “Charlie bit my finger”

I chose this video as my second favorite because it is so cute and hilarious. It again has two little infant boys. The younger baby laughing after he bit his brothers finger makes the video even better. The older brother is so upset that his little brother bit him, and then his brother laughs some more. Overall it is just funny, and the two little boys tug at your heartstrings because they are too cute.

Viral videos can be easy to create and sometimes people dont even mean to make a video so popular. But if it has all of the right elements it can be popular in no time at all.

Posted by: Emily | March 29, 2011

Facebook Fans mean Nothing!

When a company creates a Facebook page a lot of them think that the more fans they have, the more successful their efforts are. But that is actually not the case. Coca-Cola has nearly 24 million fans on Facebook which is 7 million fewer than Michael jackson.

This number means nothing, it is simply a vanity measure for show. In a recent article from Ragan’s PR Daily, they lined up 5 simple reasons why you should not use the number of fans you have to measure your success.

1. They are not a measure of impressions.

2. They are not a measure of advocacy. According to eMarketer, research shows that Facebook fans are not more likely to buy from the brand after becoming a fan.

3. They are not a measure of engagement.
4. They are not tied to a particular objective.
5. A small fan base is fine if it’s active.

 

The article offered other ways that you SHOULD measure your success on Facebook. They included:

Measuring click-throughs, measuring feedback, and monitoring global discussion volume and sentiment on your page.

 

It is important to monitor your Facebook page to make sure that you are keeping your customers happy and monitoring your progress, but having a large “fanbase” will not make or break your success on Facebook. As long as your followers are actively involved with you and your business, you will be able to evolve and grow.

Posted by: Emily | March 28, 2011

Widgets? Badges?

When I hear widgets and badges my head spins in circles. I have hear these terms before, but what they actually mean escapes my mind.

A widget is a stand- alone application that can be embedded into any third party websites by any user onto a page.

A badge is a small image on a website to invite people to grab from your website or blog. It is sharable and should be cool looking or attention grabbing.

Badges are more of a form of advertisement while a widget is more of an interactive piece for someone to embellish their blog or other type of website.

These can be very helpful to many different organizations because widgets could count down an event on your website for all visitors to see. You could have a badge so that your loyal followers or customers could almost take a piece of you with them and use it to promote your company.

Badges could be a great marketing tool without you even knowing. Instead of word of mouth, it could now become, word by badge. They provide more information for people and make it easier for them when they are trying to access information about you or your company.

This would help out the Florida Southern Chapter of the Florida Public Relations Society because on my Facebook I could post a widget with an information ticker about meetings or upcoming events that people could see. I could use a badge and all the members could have it so that other people could use it to find out more information.

Widgets and badges are definitely helpful and they give a little spice to how people can access information instead of boring text. They make things more exciting and inviting for readers.

Posted by: Emily | March 22, 2011

Outburst or PR Stunt

Chris Brown recently did an interview on Good Morning America. After Robin Roberts asked Brown about his past legal troubles he allegedly stormed out of the studio and on his way out smashed a window with a chair.

In his interview Chris Brown kept trying to revert the conversation back to his newly released album F.A.M.E. and was not really in the mood to talk about anything else, especially since it all happened two years ago.

I think that this could have been a publicity stunt, but one that was not planned on his part. Whether or not he was aware of what would be asked of him is unclear, but i think that in the moment he was just really angry and wanted to cause a scene in hopes that this dramatic exit would cause a sales boost. If he was aware that he would be asked about his past legal troubles, then it was most definitely a publicity stunt, because he knew that he could get mad and storm out and cause trouble to hopefully get fans curious.

I dont think it was smart of him. He does have a good, strong fan base even after what happened with his ex Rihanna, but i dont think that it happened over night. I think that if people see him acting outrageously again, it might cause a drop in sales andcause him to lose fans again.

Posted by: Emily | March 22, 2011

Diigo

Working with Diigo has been a lot easier than expected. At first i thought that I would just be joining another social media type website, but this one has proven to be even more effective than i was ready for.

I really like Diigo. Adding a new bookmark and getting started is so simple. Navigating through the website is a breeze and i like that you can access other peoples bookmarked sites and that they are categorized which makes it easy to find what you are looking for.

This social media website is so helpful for not only college students, but really anyone at all. It offers a convenience that we have never had before. In the past you could bookmark different websites and they would be saved to the bookmarks bar on your internet provider.

But if you are on a different computer somewhere, and need to access a website for a class project or meeting, how are you supposed to remember the complicated URL that is saved to your computer? Or should you spend hours searching google again just to find that one bit of information?

Websites like Diigo and Delicious are probably the most helpful things out there. You can bookmark your favorite websites and categorize them with tags. For someone who likes to stay extra organized like myself, this is very helpful. The best part about these types of websites is that you can access them from any computer that has internet access.

If you are doing work for a class project and need to meet with your group you dont need to have the websites written down or emailed to yourself, you can just login to Diigo or Delicious and you have them at your fingertips.

These social bookmarking websites are a god send for anyone who likes to keep track of websites on their computers, but also likes the opportunity to access them from anywhere at any time. I will definitely be using my Diigo account more and more because it is much easier than trying to remember long and complicated URLS.

Posted by: Emily | March 9, 2011

Journalism in the New Age

Its interesting to think that just 5 short years ago when I was in high school working on the school newspaper, everything print was normal. With each passing year, technology seems to be growing making the way news gets around much different.

If you wanted a story covered, you would write a press release and send it out, via mail. Now more and more reporters and journalists prefer their information be received over email, and on top of that they want high resolution pictures sent as well.

A recent study discussed on Ragan’s PR Daily showed that, “The study noted that 79 percent of journalists were either “much more likely” or “likely” to cover a story if it included high-res images. Twenty-one percent said it had no impact.”

It is interesting to see how much things have changed, and to think that most of what I learned from working on the high school newspaper and even beginner level college courses has already started to become void due to technology. The basic rules still stay the same, but where do we go from here?

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