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Personal and professional blog of Madeline Osman
April 15, 2012 by admin

PRSSA People Relations Conference

This weekend I went to a conference put on by PRSSA, a group I’m not a part of, but will probably join next year. PRSSA has a focus on Public Relations and was chosen to put on the regional conference for their organization this year. Although I’m a Marketing major, there is a lot of crossover between the two career paths. The following is some of the best advice I learned this weekend from some of the very engaging speakers I was privileged to listen to.

Scott Deitz, Senior Vice President Fleischman-Hillard

How does one succeed in the PR industry?

  • Excellent writing skills
  • Business knowledge (PR is usually a communications/journalism major)
  • Intellect – both emotional and logical intelligence
  • Passion for what you do
  • Professionalism
  • Social Media Knowledge
  • Work well in a team – someone who can take the lead, but sometimes follows
  • Loves to learn – read the Wall Street Journal
  • Produces timely, accurate, and measurable results
  • Willing to sacrifice
  • Define and differentiate yourself – show on your resume
  • Work at an agency first, learn skills, then work in a corporate setting
  • Decide if you want to work in a for-profit or non-profit company
  • Realize that finding a job is a competition
  • Say “yes” to every opportunity that you can
  • Take measured risks
  • Find a mentor
  • Look like you belong when you interview
  • Study abroad – shows that you take risks, have learned a new way to communicate, and are adaptable and cultured

Adam Flack and Viki Arias, Global Spectrum

  • Social Media – be conversational and engaging. Offer special experiences, contests, and scavenger hunts.
  • Define your target market and advertise to them in their preferred medium. Ex/ Older people look at ads in newspapers
  • Be a good community partner. The media will care if you do something that is relevant to the community.
  • Go where the media is. Ex/ The Fourth of July parade
  • Measure the effectiveness of your campaign by keeping track of the dates and times of promotions, using different discount codes, and follow up with a survey asking how people found out about the event
  • Budget marketing budget based on how well known (or not) the brand is and the projected ticket proceeds

Heather Friedman, Genovo Alternative Marketing

  • Create brand ambassadors that do the job for you
  • Define your brand of marketing
  • A modern challenge: your customers don’t have to listen to ads they don’t want to. Ex/ TV, radio
  • Marketing mix- traditional marketing, public relations, social media, events – events are the best way to bring a brand to life!
  • “Partner” with your client
  • “Fail Forward” – reconsider, ask what went wrong, make changes
  • Work with the same people you’re marketing to
  • When faced with a difficult situation on social media: apologize and fix the situation – don’t hit delete
  • Know yourself and stay true. Follow this equation…

(YOU) is the (TYPE OF COMPANY) for the (TYPE OF CUSTOMER). For example, Maddy is the Marketing student for the non-profit industry.


I came out of this weekend with new friends, new knowledge, and some potential new mentors. Definitely money and time well spent. Thanks PRSSA for putting on a great event!

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