Interview With a Public Relations Professional

March 26, 2010 at 5:24 pm (Comm 2322, Interview) (, , , )

This past week I had the privilege of conducting a face to face interview with public relations professional Mrs. Pat Rideout. Mrs. Rideout is currently the Director of Fundraising at Paula Dockery for Governor. In the past she has served as director at Polk County Builders Association Foundation, Membership & Communications Coordinator at HBA Manatee, Sales Counselor at Westminster Communities of Florida, and Government Affairs Coordinator at Publix grocery stores.


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March 11, 2010 at 4:18 pm (Comm 2322, Comments That I have Written)

Comment 1-

Rob Goetsch Jr.

Post- What Era would I work as a PR professional?

Great post Rob. I totally agree with a little of the points you stated in this post. I actually said that I would have like to work in this era of public relations in my post for a lot of the same reasons. Since this was such an influential time, is there anything you wished Edward Barnays did differently? This there anything different that you would have advised Barnays to do back then if you could speak to him knowing what we know now? Just a thought. I also like how you linked both Bernays and Freud to their biographies. Keep up the good work.

Comment 2-

Juliet Jones

Post- Twitter

Hey Juliet,

This is a great post. I like a lot of the different points you brought up about using twitter. Like you, I never really thought about using twitter for PR or business reasons until this class. I just thought twitter was good for talking with your friends and having fun posting silly things. That is great that you decided to follow some famous people and connect to their sites. Did any of them follow you in return? Did any of them comment on any of your posts? That would be pretty neat if that happened. Keep up the great work.

Comment 3-

Chad Ainsworth

Post- Week 7 Topic of the Week

Hey Chad,

You brought up some great points that I did not think of myself in my post. I like your thoughts, “For the job interview, I would recommend wearing business professional attire ( better to be overdressed than underdressed), and to not wear any perfume or cologne because the interviewer might have a negative connotation associated with that perfume or cologne from a previous spouse, boyfriend, girlfriend, etc.” I think it is great you brought up the importance of appearance. Sometimes lasting impressions will be based on appearance be it via clothing or fragrance like you pointed out. Here is just a thought. Do you think that a bad interview can be phased out by a great looking resume with a lot of experience? Or is the interview the most important factor in the hiring process? Please share your thoughts. See ya around.

Comment 4-

Annalee Cole

Post- Week Eight

Hey Annalee,

That is really cool that you are from Panama City. I have been there a few times to play concerts with my band. I thought it was a really neat place. It is hard for me to imagine what it would be like to live there because when I have been there it is always packed with people! Then again, I am only been there around spring break season of the year. Does it slow down a lot in the winter months? That is very interesting that the city officials voted against allowing TV crews to come to the city this year. Do you think that will help the city and its efforts to become more “family oriented” or will it not really make a difference?

Comment 5-

Megan Ginger

In response to her comment on my post- Week 7 Topic of the Week


Unfortunately, the software “Winway” is not free. Here is the website, From what I can tell, it is like you described, “a site where you can plug your information in and then it’ll do the rest of the work for you.” I have actually never used it for myself. Professor Nixon recommended this software to me for developing resumes. As far as I understand, she actually had something to do with the development of the software. She does to have a great deal of knowledge on the subject. I really learned a great deal from her presentations on this topic.

Comment 6-

Rob Goetsch Jr.

Post- “Top Ten from Public Relations”


This is a great list! I also greatly enjoyed learning about some of the very same points that you recognized especially the use of media. While it may sound obvious that media is a great tool its impact is often underestimated. Many times what separates a good blog post and a great blog post is maybe an additional picture, video, or even music. I also learned a great deal from the public relations interview like you mentioned. While we may learn a great deal in the classroom it helps us almost reinforce that information in our heads when we see it in “real life.” I for one can agree with you saying that I greatly enjoyed this class and learned a great deal.

Comment 7-

Annalee Cole

Post- Top 10 List!


I really enjoyed reading your top ten list. I also included social networking, blog commenting, crisis communication, and podcasts in the top ten list of my own. I thought it was very interesting that in your interview with a public relations professional that biggest advice he gave you was the importance of reading. I think so often we choose not to read valuable information that is so accessible to us in our society today. I wonder what public relations professionals of pervious eras would give to access to all the resources that are available to us today. This is just a thought.

Comment 8-

Molly Dodd-

Post- My Top 10


I really appreciate your top ten list. It is funny because I included a lot of the same items in the top ten post of my own. These topics are twitter, commenting, resumes, and crisis communication. I can also identify with all the other topics you included in your post. I think we just learned so much in this class that it is difficult to limit our topics to just a list of ten items. I really connected with your emphasis on being a good listener. So many people express the need to be a good writer but we do not here too much about being a good listener. Great post!

Comment 9-

Amanda Furmage-

Post- Grand Finale


This is a fantastic post about the top things you have learned this semester. I actually included a lot of the same key concepts in my top ten post. These concepts included the use of social media, proper resume writing, crisis communication, Twitter. It is funny because I even include quotes from the interview with Kneale Mann also in my post. I learned a great deal of information from viewing that interview. His advice about writing what interests you and your audience finding you really struck me. I think that is great you are looking into possible careers within public relations. Best of luck!

Comment 10-

Brianna Huisinga-

Post- “Top 10 Things I learned This Semester”


It seems like you learned a lot of valuable content this semester. I feel very fortunate that I was also able to acquire abundant amounts of knowledge pertaining to the field of pubic relations. I actually included points about commenting, job resumes, goolgle alerts, and crisis communication in the top ten post of my own. I thought it was interesting that you also decided to include information about compfight, Ap Style Guide, and honesty in this post. Reading your blog reminding me of the times when we discussed this information. It is hard for me to remember everything thing that we covered this semester so it is always good to have a refresher. Great job!

Comment 11-

Mikelle Liette,

Post- Comm 2322…. Oh The Things I have Learned!!


I am gald that you enjoyed your time this semester in Comm 2322, public relations applications. I must say that I also enjoyed our time together and I also learned a great deal of valuable information’s. This is a great list of information that you have compiled in this post. I actually included so of the same points in my top 10 post. However, I might have approached the topics slightly different in my post. I think it is great that each of us bring out different aspects of great information and then share our thoughts with one another!

Comment 12

Megan Ginger

Post- “Top 10 Tips”


I am glad that you learned a lot of great information this semester. I am glad to say that I also learned a great deal of knowledge pertaining to public relations myself. There is a lot of great advice given in this post. I am glad you reminded me of the importance of being organized and prompt. It is easy to forget the small and simple things that are very important to the client. I also included information in my top 10 post about resumes, crisis communication, and social media outlets. Great post

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Week 7 Topic of the Week

March 6, 2010 at 5:41 pm (Comm 2322, Topic Of The Week) (, , )

The most important thing to realize about your resume is that it will never actually get you the job. However, It will hopefully grant you an interview. Getting a foot in the door and the chance to be interviewed is the purpose of your resume. With that said there are some helpful tips available for creating better resumes.

First of all, when creating a resume the software “WInway” can be very helpful tool. Next, while some people say that your resume should never be longer than one page it is ok to go longer if you feel you have some excellent experience that needs to be seen. If not, try to keep it under a page. Next up, it is ok for a recent college grad to list their education before their experience because you probably have not developed a great deal of experience in the field of public relations. However, in the future this will change and you should list your relevant experience first. Also, it is never a good idea to send out hundreds of genetic resumes. Your resume should also be shaped to target that specific position. Always try to look at the job description and use the same words or phases that they are using. However, be careful to never over exaggerate your skills. The truth may find you out and have dangerous consequences. Finally, never under any circumstances should you start a letter with, “To whom it may concern.” This will most likely find your resume in the trash can. Like stated before try to tailor your resume for each specific location.

For some more help check out these great websites concerning buliding public relations resumes-

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Chapter 6 Reading Notes

March 6, 2010 at 2:01 pm (Comm 2322, Reading Notes) (, , )

  • After research  in completed, the next step is to create a campaign to accomplish what was indicated in the research. This process is known as program planning.

Page 167 Public Relations Strategies and Tactics by Wilcox and Cameron

  • A popular approach to planning is using a process called management by objective (MBO). In the book “Public Relations Management by Objectives” Norman R. Nager and T. Harrell Allen discuss 9 steps involving MBO.
  1. Client/employer objectives
  2. Audience/publics
  3. Audience objectives
  4. Media channels
  5. Media channel objectives
  6. Sources and questions
  7. Communication strategies
  8. Essence of the message
  9. Nonverbal support

Page 152 Public Relations Strategies and Tactics by Wilcox and Cameron

  • The Eight basic elements of public relations planning
  1. Situation
  2. Objectives
  3. Audience
  4. Strategy
  5. Tactics
  6. Calendar/timeline
  7. Budget
  8. Evaluation

Page 155 Public Relations Strategies and Tactics by Wilcox and Cameron

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Chapter 5 notes

March 5, 2010 at 10:37 am (Comm 2322, Reading Notes) (, , )

  • Before research is performed it is important to know these facts
  1. What may be the problem
  2. What kind of information is needed
  3. How the results of the research will be used
  4. The publics that should be addressed
  5. If the company needs to do the research from within or hire an outsider
  6. How the research will be analyzed, reported, or applied
  7. When the results will be needed
  8. The total cost of the research

Page 128 Public Relations Strategies and Tactics by Wilcox and Cameron

  • Research is used to
  1. Achieve credibility with management
  2. Define audiences and segment publics
  3. Formulate strategy
  4. Test messages
  5. Help management keep in touch
  6. Prevent Crises
  7. Monitor the competition
  8. Sway public opinion
  9. Generate publicity
  10. Measure Success

Page 128-130 Public Relations Strategies and Tactics by Wilcox and Cameron

  • Qualitative Research is looking into what individuals may value, how they behave, and how they make decisions. Some examples of qualitative research are
  1. Content analysis
  2. Interviews
  3. Focus groups
  4. Copy Testing
  5. Ethnographic observation and role playing

Page 148 Public Relations Strategies and Tactics by Wilcox and Cameron

  • Quantitative Research- Research that is concerned with numbers using scientific sampling methods. So examples of quantitative research are
  1. Polls
  2. Surveys

Page 139 Public Relations Strategies and Tactics by Wilcox and Cameron

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Week Six Topic of the Week

March 5, 2010 at 10:01 am (Comm 2322, Topic Of The Week) (, )

In Chapter 4 we learned the difference between a public relations department in a company and a public relations firm, For a student just about to graduate from college deciding which one to seek to become a member of is a very import question. This one more beneficial to other? Or perhaps one is more valuable to a long term career than the other. How can we find out?

On page 121 of Public Relations Strategies and Tactics by Wilcox and Cameron we can find the answers to these questions. Within a PR firm, individuals have the opportunity to network with other public relations professionals that can lead to better jobs, provide support to a variety of clients allowing a possibilities for advances, and employees in a PR firm will have their skills “honed and polished.” However a PR firm does have it setbacks too. For example, the starting salary is usually lower than expected, there is a lack of benefits like medical insurance, and there is not much opportunity to share in company stock. The students other option is to join a corporate public relations department. Here, individuals usually get to interact with high company executives, receive a higher starting salary as well as more benefits, and more future opportunities become available. Just like a PR firm, a corporate department has its disadvantages. There is less of an opportunity to network with other professionals, the working pace can be slower as well as less involving, and it is more difficult to be hired at a corporate department without previous job experience.

Reading these facts has helped the student develop a better idea of both working environments. It seems that a corporate department has more to offer an individual for a long-term career. However, as we read that it is harder to be hired in a company department. It seems like it might be a good idea to start out at a PR firm and once an individual has some basic experience in public relations the individual may wish to switch from the firm to the department.

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