I wanted to thank you for your excellent presentation on strategy last week at the PR summer institute.
Strategy, as you well know, is an elusive, abstract concept that’s difficult for students to grasp much less to actuate in their communication campaigns. But your presentation clarified it considerably for the students (who gave you unanimously high ratings in their evaluations).
— Mel Ehrlich, faculty leader for the NYUSCPS Public Relations Strategy & Execution Summer Intensive.
After a colorful week featuring the Blue Screen of Death & Pink Eye, reading this email after a two-hour “Take Me Away” nap is just what the doc ordered.
StratComm LookBook #4
The NYUSCPS Summer Intensives are off-and-running.
Here, the PR Strategy & Execution group just after hearing my revamped version of The Public Relations Strategy, featuring brand new references to The Wizard of Oz, birth order, the Brady Bunch & Zombie Apocalypse 2012.
Think of StratComm planning like birth order.
- Objectives are the oldest children. The responsible ones. The ones with vision and expectations from others.
- Tactics are the youngest children. They’re often spoiled. They get to play, have fun & experiment with the latest toys & electronics.
- Strategies are the middle children. They’re often misunderstood for all kinds of reasons.
This morning, I’m doing a guest lecture for the Public Relations Strategy and Execution Summer Intensive. My topic: The Public Relations Strategy.
How can this poster turn into a blog post topic about StratComm & teen depression?
Without a journalism background, creating a story (or blog post) angle doesn’t come easy. Many in the Strategic Communications crew are feeling the pain. It’s a common conundrum, so let me try to answer:
Debra Bush-Ford’s StratComm-Tumblr project focuses on teen depression, e.g., treatment, prevention, medication, etc. It’s a broad topic with plenty of StratComm possibilities.
Debra’s latest post features the image above and a few statistics that reinforce how primary care physicians often miss the signs of teen depression. She writes: If primary care physicians become involved with teen diagnosis during the initial visits, maybe it will reduce the above statistics.
The content is good, yet the direct StratComm-teen depression angle isn’t clear. The post invites questions, such as:
** What is the StratComm Program? Is the poster/signage, Start Screening in Your Practice, a StratComm tactic targeted to primary care physicians? Or is there another StratComm element involved?
** Who/What? If so, who/what organization’s is trying to reach primary care docs about early teen depression diagnosis?
** How? In this post/example, how is StratComm part of the solution toward preventing teen depression?
Here’s an example with a tighter StratComm angle:
Teen Depression Docs, a NYC-based non-profit organization, is reaching out to NYC docs with a teen depression awareness campaign. In an effort to promote early detection and treatment, TDD’s hope is that docs will recognize the early signs of depression in their teen patients.
The campaign involves canvassing local doctor’s office with a free poster: “Start Screening in Your Practice.” But the question is this: Screening what? There’s no mention of teen depression. How are the docs supposed to know?
This is where the post can address Debra’s statement: If primary care physicians become involved with teen diagnosis during the initial visits, maybe it will reduce the above statistics. That is, how can docs become more involved? What kinds of StratComm programs will help reduce the statistics?
This was a hypothetical example based upon a guess that the “Start Screening in Your Practices” was a real-life element. The bottom line remains: Regardless of the topic, each post features a StratComm angle that is crystal-clear to the reader.
WHEN SOMEONE CALLS A BLOG POST A “BLOG”
I have to agree with this one, though I’m not so sure I’d flick your nose.
** The StratCommmers is my Tumblr blog. (Or, you can just say “blog”)
** Each item I create is a post, a blog post, a tumblr post, etc. Some say entry.
A blog is like a book. A post/entry is like a chapter.
Regardless of your position on same-sex marriage, StratComm pros involved in Barack Obama’s 2012 campaign will have a historical ‘story’ to share as part of their own personal & professional brands for the rest of their careers. That’s pretty cool stuff.
Election 2012 just became more divisive than ever. Obama’s StratCommers are going to be very busy.
I was once a proponent of compartmentalizing personal and professional on social media. I’ve since changed my tune — within reason.
When it comes to Brand EFChandler on Twitter, Facebook or Instagram, for example, I believe in the value of presenting myself as a complete human being vs. a “person with a personal life” and a “person with a professional life.”
The balancing act requires a certain amount of judgement & common sense, and not all networks need to be open. As those with strong branding chops, I believe that StratCommers need to take the lead in creating blended personal brands that don’t tip too far in one direction or the other.
The Brand That Feeds: Balancing Personal and Professional on Social Media
We got good at social because we weren’t afraid to mix business and pleasure. We attracted an audience because we weren’t shy about tweeting out our favorite Whitney Houston song when we learned of her death.
So what happens when the personal gets boxed out on the very networks we pressed our bosses to start using?
This picture’s worth a thousand words. And when it comes to buzzwords & corporate blah-blah, there are thousands of them that make my skin crawl.
StratCommers, direct your immediate attention to The Digiday Dictionary: What It Really Means.
Two Digiday shout-out posts in the same day? Yep. When you stumble across something this good, you have no choice but to stop everything that you’re doing.
Digiday, thanks for stripping industry-speak to the barest of bare with smarts & a sense of humor.
The underlying message here is snarky, but let’s face it: when it comes to group work, the #1 complaint typically surrounds those who aren’t pulling their weight.
Last week, I attended an online seminar called “Creating Effective Group Projects,” led by Ted Bongiovanni, the head of NYU Distance Learning. I came away with some new ideas for the Strategic Communications final group project, but effectively dealing with the slacker teammate remains.
We used team peer reviews in the 2011 Social Media Marketing Summer Intensive, and I tested the approach with this Spring’s Using PR as a Marketing Tool & PR 2.0.
I found that team members’ results are generally in sync, including those from the group’s problem child. Honest self-reflection is a sign of good genes.
It’s when one half of a team throws the other under-the-bus — and vice-versa — that you have to wonder what was really going on behind those masquerading smiles.