PR Real World Conference 2010: Part One.

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This past Friday, February 19, I attended the PR Real World Conference in Atlanta with three other lovely ladies from the PRSSA chapter at WCU. Altogether there were four sessions plus a luncheon with a keynote speaker. Throughout the conference there was also many opportunities to network with other public relations students from different states, and individuals from companies like Ketchum, Porter Novelli, MS&L Worldwide, Golin Harris, and many others. At the opening session of the conference, we were reminded of some important things to keep in mind throughout the day:

  1. Networking is critical!
  2. Save contacts and remember who they are. After you receive a business card write down something so you can remember who they are. Follow-up on them two to three days after initial meeting (ex. I met you at Real World..).
  3. Do not just join PRSA or PRSSA, get involved!

Here are some valuable tips that I took from each session I attended:

Session 1: Social Media’s Place in PR

The speakers at this session were Ashley Payne from the Georgia Aquarium, Stephen Brown from MS&L Worldwide, and Nick Ayres from The Home Depot. They each offered valuable advice about using social media and how it has affected the companies they work for.

  • Ashley Payne: A year ago, the Georgia Aquarium did not have social media but they did have traditional public relations. Now that they use Twitter (10,862 followers), Facebook (16,013 fans) and e-mailing lists they are able to offer special promotions and give away free things via social media.
  • Stephen Brown: MS&L’s social media team helps many clients with their social media. Stephen informed us to create a calendar of specific times and dates and information for what to Tweet about. He also said to engage customers using the social media. Twitter has become very popular with this because of hashtags, ‘mentioning’ and direct messaging. One of the important messages he left us with was to know the purpose of having social media for your client.
  • Nick Ayres: Home Depot started their social media two and half years ago. He said it is great for offering promotions and gaining customer feedback. The team he works on is made up of him and one other individual.

The speakers had many other things to say about social media. Ashley Payne mentioned that you should make your Facebook and Twitter private when you apply for a job. They DO look at your pages, so at least clean them up. Another bit of information they included when applying for a job was to research what the company was doing with social media. If they are not using social media ask them why not and explain to them why they should (promote special offers, deals and events). Here are some other great pointers the three left us with:

  • Organizations want to know other things you do besides just social media when applying for a job.
  • Know the different platforms of social media. RESEARCH! Know how to apply this for business.
  • The Big Three: Youtube, Facebook and Twitter.
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4 thoughts on “PR Real World Conference 2010: Part One.

  1. Courtney says:

    I’m so glad you put these tips up! Now people who didn’t get to go to the conference can still learn from the amazing professionals who presented.

  2. Ashley says:

    I learned so much from this conference. It was such a great opportunity and I definitely wanted to share it with everyone!

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