Thursday, May 21

Online Portfolios and Resumes

(The days of paper are petering out! Photo by Nathan Krig --
Please do not use without proper attribution)

I began an online portfolio this week. In my job search I have been applying online frequently. When I learned about the possibilities of an online portfolio, I thought it would be a great way to enhance my online job applications. It is a quick and easy way for me to show off some of my work alongside my resume.

For my portfolio, I chose to use VisualCV. The program is fairly easy to use, however, I did not feel that the tutorial was as helpful as it could be. I like that there is an option for adding pictures to each document, a place for videos and a way to copy and paste your resume from word.

I worked hard on my resume and like its format, so VisualCV allows me to keep some of that in tact. I also like that my resume is front and center and has my picture above. I received a tip from one informational interview saying that a picture with your resume helps interviewers remember who you are. When interviewing many candidates: things get blurry.

Overall, I like the options and capabilities of VisualCV and am excited to see what it does for my online job search.

Monday, May 18

The "Digital Divide" Might be Fading. Is a "Social Media Divide" Taking its Place?

(Photo by Nathan Krig -- Please do not use without proper attribution)

There is no doubt that the digital divide is slowly fading. Laptops and personal computers are increasingly available worldwide. As this is the case, the number of people online continues to increase, closing the gap between those online and those not.

Even as this is the case, companies might be in the midst of creating a new divide -- between the social media savvy and the non savvy. My grandmother attempted to create a blog under the impression that she could make money doing so. The end result was a sparse page with several ads relating to cat food -- not one blog post was present. I talked to her about it and learned that she did not understand how the blogisphere works at all. Furthermore, she gave up because she could not figure out how to make progress with her blog. It is important to note that she did read about blogs and gave hers some thought. It seems to me that there are some people who understand social media after studying it and there are others who do not understand and therefore give-up.

This leads directly into the question I have asked in the title of this post. I would say there are two very simplified groups of people online, those who engage in online discussion and those who do not. Within those who do not engage, there are probably two more simplified groups, those who chose not to engage because they do not wish to, and those who do not understand how to engage -- like my grandmother.

This becomes relevant in a new context when we look at the way corporations have begun to lavish customer service on social media influentials. For example, Todd Defren recently blogged about his troubled experience with a Netgear item he purchased. He called Comcast, his Internet provider because he could not get his new item to work: He had a crummy experience. Next he resorted to online tactics, and had a better experience with a more helpful individual, but still he could not solve the problem. Then he called Netgear, and had another terrible experience. After becoming frustrated he began tweeting. Immediately, a Netgear representative assisted him.

I wonder if Todd Defren was assisted so quickly because he has a substantial online following via his blog and Twitter. Or was he assisted just because he is social-media savvy? He implies on his blog that he was assisted on Twitter because he is active in social media.

If this is the case, what will become of people like my grandmother as corporations move forward in the online world? Will a social media divide be acceptable?

I'd love to hear your thoughts!

Tuesday, May 12

Who can Park Their Comments on Your Blog?

(Photo by Richelle Krig -- Please do not use without proper attribution)

It seems, from the comments I have seen, that folks are waiting to implement a comment policy until after they receive a "tasteless" comment. I know that some bloggers do not receive many comments -- my blog is currently at that stage. However, I am fairly certain that over time, my blog will accumulate more comments, at which point I feel it important to have a policy that I can differ to.

Comment policies are meant to be a little like an insurance policy: who doesn't like a little insurance? You can implement a policy that reflects your idea of ethical and or professional behavior. When the time comes to delete a comment because it contradicts the standards you uphold, you have the insurance of you comment policy. If the policy is posted where everyone can see it, then you should not have problems enforcing it.

Since a blog is a public forum for bloggers to publish opinions and ideas, it follows that eventually most bloggers are going to be confronted with a comment that makes them uncomfortable. The great thing about your blog, is that it's yours! That means you have the power -- and the right -- to do something about it.

You, as the owner of the blog, have the right to set ground rules for the way others interact on your blog. This means that you can say, "I reserve the right to delete and or not post comments that contain profanity or obscenity." When you get a comment with those characteristics; you may delete it and point to your policy.

Furthermore, as the owner of the blog, your reputation can be affected by the atmosphere created by the comments posted on your blog. It is important that your blog speaks to the kind of impression you wish to make, both online and off.

For good ideas on what kinds of comment policies you could implement, see Lorelle VanFossen's post or Both the previously mentioned blogs go into detail on how to implement a comment policy. It does not take long to identify the standards that you expect fellow bloggers to conduct discourse by: write your comment policy today!

Wednesday, May 6

How and Why to Plan an Event

(Photo by Richelle Krig -- Please do not use without proper attribution)

Event planning can be a big mystery to many people. Kathy Sluzewski, management supervisor from Northlich, gives three reasons to have an event: to interest the media, to inspire sales and to increase traffic. In order to successfully achieve the above-mentioned, there are a few things you will probably be interested in learning.

Here are several things to keep in mind while planning your event:

1. Make sure everyone involved in the event is aware of why the event is being held.

2. Check and double-check all reservations, appointments and decoration-related details.

3. Remember that keeping the customer happy is a crucial part of the planning process.

4. Keep your target audience in sight.

For some additional tips, click here.

Tom Hagley, professor of public relations at the University of Oregon, gave this tip in his public realtions planning class: "If you are unsure of where to begin planning, imagine you are a guest at the event; then ask yourself what you would want, as a guest, to make the event spectacular. Walk yourself step by step through the event, beginning with the invitation." Make a list as you go through your imaginative process: Check your budget later. At this point, you are solely after a vision for the event.

Once the vision is set, come up with a plan for the planning process complete with your target audience, time line and budget. From the plan, you should be able to create a list of the phone calls you will need to make and deadlines you will need to meet -- remember to continually check on all reservations, appointments and decoration-related details. Lastly, make certain there will be a person on-site the day of the event whose sole purpose is to orchestrate the event.

These tips should give you a running start on your endeavors; happy planning!

Monday, May 4

Social Media Releases (SMRs)

Science Factory's Official Logo

“It’s important to understand that the Social Media News Release is not intended as a replacement for the traditional news release... With 50+ percent of consumers now creating and sharing content online (Pew Research), it just makes sense to democratize access to corporate news and multimedia assets to anyone (reporters, bloggers, laypeople) who might be interested, and, to create a forum for community and context that – to date – has been unavailable via old-world press releases.” -Todd Defren

Even as SMRs are not intended to replace traditional news releases, they should still be written in hard news style with usable information. According to Dr. Tiffany Derville Gallicano, assistant professor at the University of Oregon School of Journalism and Communication, an SMR, like a news release, should be written in inverted pyramid style with a hard news lead. Both reporters and bloggers are busy. They are not interested in spinning your story the way you pitch it to them. Instead, they need atomized content, with information that they can use quickly, to write a story on their own terms. The best way to make a reporter happy with your release, and therefore more likely to pick it up, is to write directly: eliminate the fluff.

SMRs are different than traditional news releases because they allow content to be atomized and broken down. They also allow reporters and bloggers to converse online about content within the release. Furthermore, this format allows official logos and photos to be downloaded for the reporter's use. Another bonus to the SMR is that it can be tagged on your delicious page with links to other relevant online material. Shift Communications came out with the first SMR template; the diagram shows how content is easily rehashed by the user to create unique, relevant news stories.

Several SMR sites have popped up as of late. Just this evening I gave pitchengine a try. Visit my SMR for Eugene's Science Factory here. It is somewhat like a traditional release: The main part of the text is written nearly the same as a traditional release would be. However, it does offer atomized content with its news facts list to the right as well as extensive sharing capabilities online. Given that more than 50 percent of consumers are online, as Todd Defren points out, I would have to agree that it makes sense to offer an online version of the traditional news release.

Bloggers have indeed become an outlet for pitching your stories to. What better way than on their own platform?

Wednesday, April 29

Tips from the Ones who Hire -Interviews

(Photo by Richelle Krig -- from my portfolio -- Please do not use without proper attribution)
The University of Oregon's School of Journalism and Communication just held mock interviews and portfolio reviews in Portland, Ore.; PR practitioners volunteered to interview students. Click here if you are curious about what a portfolio review entails!

This was a really great experience that helped me to understand what practitioners are looking for during an interview. I spoke with Jodi Moore, Senior Staffing Partner and head of Studio D from Waggener Edstrom Worldwide, and Amy Moore Paterson, Vice President of LanePR.

Both ladies were very helpful, and offered information that I was grateful for. Here are several things they emphasized:

* List your social media skills on your resume.

*Don't expect to get hired based on your portfolio; however, they are good conversation starters.

* The way you present yourself and your portfolio is more important than what might or might not be within its pages.

* Bring an extra copy or two of your resume with you to the interview. (This is courteous to the interviewer, who may have 100 resumes to search through, before finding yours.)

* Know what is on your resume; have one in front of you so that you are not guessing at the next job listed. (This is why you should bring two with you to the interview.)

* While you are selling yourself, telling the interviewer about all of your wonderful skills, also tell a story that backs up your claims. (i.e., I have planned five weddings to date. Through planning weddings, I have realized I am a great problem solver. Once, the hem in the mother of the groom's dress fell out. I used clear duck-tape to tack it back, which held it in place for the rest of the night.)

* Have some questions for the interviewer. It shows that you are interested and have done research on the job you are interviewing for.

In addition to these tips, I would strongly suggest talking yourself through both your resume and portfolio -- before your interview. This will help you to communicate clearly and feel confidant in yourself. If you feel confidant, you are more likely to deliver in the above-mentioned areas.

Monday, April 27

Podcasting -an Experience

(Photo thanks to

Today I have officially created my first podcast using Audacity. Please listen by clicking here!
Below are the show notes. As this was an assignment, the additional podcasts listed, are only hypothetical.

Particular Memorandums (Show Notes)

Welcome to my podcast series. I’m your host, Richelle Krig.

Particular Memorandums is a podcast series designed to help public relations practitioners to develop ethical and targeted messages. Each podcast covers ethical ways to deal with different audiences. This is the go to for your ethical gray areas in messaging.


Week 1: The Foundations of Ethics

Week 2: Case Studies: What They Did Well, and What They Should Have Kept in Mind

Week 3: Ethical Green Messaging

Week 4: Social Media and Ethical Viral Marketing

Show Notes for Week 2: Ethical Green Messaging

Introduction: :0-:39

Greenwashing: :39- :50

Five ways to evaluate green messaging: :50-4:15

Next week: 4:15-4:56


Green Washing Index. Accessed 22 April, 2009.

Hamill, S.; Heine, L.; Vesilind, A. P. (2007, October). Kermit’s Lament: It’s Not Easy Being Green. Retrieved from vid=2&hid=106&sid=bfe6b68f-9dbb-4868-ac8a-7eddb0570dfe%40sessionmgr109