Monday, 5 April 2010

CIPR: Where is the history?

Before I begin this, I'm a student and am actively involved (when I can) with the CIPR North East. I also study a CIPR approved BA Hons Public Relations course and am about to (hopefully!) take the final step and enter into the working world of PR officially.

But something struck me yesterday when I read over @DavidGHPhillips blog post, on challenges for CIPR post Farrington I know almost nothing about the CIPR, I know what it is, I know what it is there for, but I know pretty much zilch about it's history. Indeed many of the points made in the post mentioned I wasn't aware of.

Using my 'expert' student skills I went in search of answers. The CIPR home page 'about' section told me what I knew. Wikipedia (although some consider not a credible source), gave me nothing apart from 1 Membership, 2 Sectoral groups, 3 Governance, 4 External links, 5 References.

Google offered me some form of hope in finding out more. Using the search term 'CIPR history' I found this, an article on Jacquie L'Etang's book, 'Public relations in Britain: a history of professional practice in the 20th Century'. I think this will be extremely interesting.

I don't have lots of experience and my PR career will hopefully begin when I graduate in Summer, so I may not be best placed to pass my judgement. But if the CIPR is to be understood by newcomers like myself and for PR to be seen as a profession, shouldn't it have an element of tradition and recorded history?

I'm particularly interested in regime changes in the CIPR leadership and general feeling about the stages the CIPR has been through since it was founded as the IPR. The blogpost above gave me some good insight into an opinion of the last 'regime'.

If anyone knows of any articles or books that could give me further information then please let me know.

Wednesday, 6 January 2010

Snow fun should be capitalised on by PR

Ok I have an idea and I think it is great BUT I am doing essays for my final year (asides from this)! So no fun in the snow for me but here is an idea I had. And hopefully PR will make the most out of this weather where some industries may suffer...

Here was my PR stunt idea:

1.) Build a snowman

2.) Boil the kettle

3.) Make a sign

4.) Take a photograph to send to PR agencies with a sign saying

" Give me a job or the snow man gets it!"

Disclaimer at the bottom of the email would read
"No snowmen were harmed in the making of this photographic stunt...but they could be"

So what PR news have I noticed... Local councils coping 'the best they can' with snow, ice and gritting. Supermarkets speaking of panic buying, certain product sales up (even cat litter).

News courtesy of Twitter and @deankirbyMEN "Back on the cat litter front, Sainsburys say sales up 20% as people try to 'fight off hazardous ice in and around their homes'.

The cat litter one is my favourite so far, I will be honest.
Anyway let's see what is thrown up over the next week or so.
Anyone see any good examples then please let me know... The more creative the better!

Friday, 18 December 2009

PR Degrees-What's the difference?

This is my attempt to get back into blogging! And with a new colour- I think white looks better. More industry related ones to follow but for now I want to know what other students are doing in their PR degree at other Universities. I think this area is over looked somewhat.

I am in my third and final year at the University of Sunderland and so far I have completed modules in PR (obviously), Social Media, Non-Commercial PR, PR Ethics, Journalism, Advertising and Marketing as well as Media and Cultural Studies. The course is also CIPR approved.

I have done a week placement as part of my course and have to do another 2 weeks this year. One placement has to be in-house and the other in an agency. We have produced a newsletter for an organisation (I did this for a primary school last year) and we are doing an Internal Communications Audit this year (mine is for a Secondary school this year).

This academic year we have also done speech writing and in the New Year we will be looking at Crisis Management which should be interesting!

I would like to know what other PR students do at Universities in the UK. For example, I know some don't do press releases and I believe others do a year placement.

If any PR student past or present would like to comment please do...
What do you like or don't like about your course? What could be improved? Is it perfect?

Friday, 13 November 2009

Lack of posts

I haven't posted anything on here for ages! I promise to soon.
3rd year of PR degree means I am extremely busy!

Posts coming soon...

Tuesday, 1 September 2009

Can we pay for online content now please?

I am writing this in relation to job cuts for the Metro newspaper. I know this seems a bit late on in the paying for online content discussion but I think I have made up my mind for now! I don't know what people will think of this and to be honest I have been known to sit on the fence but I am just going to throw this out there. I THINK WE SHOULD PAY FOR ONLINE NEWSPAPER CONTENT. There I have said it. But here is why.

I think it will save the newspaper. As in the print version, the old school hard copy that you can hold. My logic is this,with regards to PR. If you go online, you can copy and paste an article, print it for free and demonstrate coverage to a client. Now, you can do this as many times as you want. No limits and it is free. The paper is not making any money, just gaining coverage, and a bit more advertising revenue. To buy a hard copy of a paper for cuttings and AVE you would have to buy that paper twice, assuming a copy for you and your agency and a copy for the client. Now if this was repeated on the internet, papers would get the advertising revenue and money for copies.

Paying a higher subscription fee and making the print version cheaper, could save traditional hard copy newspapers and countless journalist jobs? So we don't have to keep seeing articles like this and we can still get our chippy chips wrapped properly!

Now I don't know how PR will take this as it will mean more of a budget going on AVE, and to some peoples annoyance it may take up more room in the office and cost to send off for recycling.

Maybe this won't save journo's jobs but in this world where Journalism and Public Relations rely on each other and can have a love/hate relationship, couldn't this ultimately help us all out in the long term?

UPDATE: This discussion carries on here with Neville Hobson (@jangles) Where it is safe to say I wasn't as clued up on my theory as I thought!

Thursday, 27 August 2009

PR student development.

This Summer will be remembered as the Summer of work experience. All of it at fantastic agencies in Manchester working on some really interesting clients and working with great people many of whom I hope to keep in touch with.

Since my last post about my placement at Fido I have spent 2 weeks at Mason Williams, 2 weeks at Impact Media PR followed by a week freelancing there (hence my lack of posts). I think I now know that PR is the profession for me. Which is a good job as I have 2 weeks with Robson Brown in Newcastle starting a week on Monday!

I have done a social media and blogging presentation at Impact which everyone said they learnt from (and no they weren't just saying that!). I talked about the uses of Audioboo, explained 'how to blog', even though I am still figuring it out some what! I even managed not to talk about Twitter-due to time constraints, although I did produce a very detailed social media proposal which featured a large section on it.

This all leads me on to what I think PR students should do to try and improve their chances of getting a job but most importantly figuring out whether PR is the right career for them:

1.) Work experience
I really enjoy my course, the theory is interesting. That's all well and good but you need to actually do something with what you have learnt. Work experience is the best way of achieving this and it also gives you great satisfaction to see that what you have done in class is actually useful in the outside world.

2.) Networking
"It's not what you know, it's who you know". Extremely true, although obviously it isn't true if you don't know much. This isn't just about finding a career, it's also about your own personal and professional development. I have had advice from many experienced professionals who have been in the industry for years and I will take all of this on board to make sure that I will be useful for any future employer and try to stand out from the crowd.

3.) Social media skills
This has been what PR professionals have been most interested in when I have told them about my studies and my age! Now my issue with this is that I don't want to be pigeon holed as being a 'social media guru', not that there is anything wrong with that, I just don't feel that role is for me. I want to be a well rounded professional, known for being good at all (if possible) or at least most traits within public relations such as being creative. However, this will make a student so employable and it is generally what we know about because of our age and generations interests.

4.) Take every opportunity...
Any opportunity to get someones business card, take it. Especially with PR professionals. Now this isn't a selfish thing because you could be just as much use to them as they could be to you. You could meet someone who works for a company and has nothing to do with PR, but they could be a future client or decent contact.

5.) Student CIPR membership
It would really help to become a member of the CIPR! Firstly, it helps you keep up to date with topics and trends in the wold of PR. Secondly, it looks good on your C.V. Thirdly, it gets your foot in the door. Go to the meetings, get involved and chat to professionals from your area-then try and get yourself some work experience!

Sadly, these things aren't definitely going to get you a job. But it's all about being pro active so that when you do finally get a job, you'll be ready.

If there are any other PR students who have advice or any PR professionals then please add anything to the list...

Saturday, 18 July 2009

Fido PR placement and cocktails!

I finished 2 weeks work experience at Fido PR in Manchester on 1oth July. It was brilliant! Really enjoyed it and worked with a wonderful team. I helped out with clients RHS Show Tatton Park, Golden Square shopping centre in Warrington and the charity Forever Manchester. I did a whole range of things whilst I was there but I think my favourite was helping to arrange the Forever Manchester Cocktail Party!

I invited local radio DJ's from Key 103, XFM Manchester, BBC Radio Manchester etc and rang round celebrities agents and managers to see if they would like to attend. The biggest success for me was when Bez confirmed that he would attend! I had the privelage of meeting him, his partner Monica and friend Lee at the event on the 15th at Harvey Nichols in Manchester. They were great, really chatty and friendly. This was the first time I have met a 'celeb' and, (this is going to sound strange) they are just normal people! A valuable lesson learnt for me, although to be honest I have never been into celebrity culture anyway.

OK! magazine were partners for the event and there were photographers from the mag and local media. The M.E.N have some great images from the evening and the article is a good bit of coverage . The event was a great success and the cocktails were delicious!

I am sad to leave Fido and will hopefully be able to go back in the future as I have met some wonderful people and made some lovely friends.

But, no rest for the wicked, 2 weeks at Mason Williams starting monday and then 2 weeks at Impact Media PR! By the time I start my third year I will have almost 4 months experience under my belt. I don't know if it will mean I get a job after my degree, the way things are with the economy, but the main thing is I am enjoying PR and am learning that it is the career for me.