#ImportanceofPR The Tweet Life: A Look at President Trump’s Use of Twitter

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The 45th President of the United States has caused quite a stir on social media in ways no President has before. His tweets especially are characterized by his vulgar, forthright, and often cutting businessman personality and style, packing quite the punch into 140-characters.

The Twitter dynasty started in May 2009. Donald Trump, a more private individual known for his billionaire business ventures and “The Apprentice” television fame as its former host, announced his appearance on the Late Show with David Letterman through a very professional tweet.  Back then, he utilized Twitter in the way typical of many professionals. He promoted his book, “Thinking Like a Champion” published that year, shared his upcoming media appearances with the world, and posted his own quotes in order to build his personal brand and his network. Surprisingly enough and in stark contrast to the present, his political side was silent.

All of a sudden, in 2011, the Donald Trump we know on Twitter today erupted like a volcano. That year, he made his opinions on political matters known, criticizing the Republican Party, then-President Barack Obama’s Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (nicknamed “Obamacare”), and even other popular influencers in the media (and was often called out for an arrogant, bullying tone). He started to tweet, retweet, and reply to influencers rapidly. He did this so rapidly that by 2016 when he was running for president, according to a BBC article, he averaged 375 tweets a month. This lasted through the end of November and the election.

According to Mike Berland, a political operative who worked on Hillary Clinton’s 2008 campaign and the CEO of strategic research and analytics firm Edelman, in an article in The New York Times, “We’ve never seen this before in politics…This is a continuous Trump rally that happens on Twitter at all hours.”

Despite controversy over Trump’s presidency, he has ushered in a new digital revolution of Twitter interaction between influencer and consumer. Unlike many other politicians, the tweets come directly from his voice, building his fan base. His constant opinion on current issues can at times cause backlash, but even these negative interactions allow him to attract attention. Twitter users know that they can engage with him at any hour on the platform and he will respond.

As the President of the United States, Trump is naturally a trendsetter and newsmaker. His Twitter presence adds to his power and influence on the world and ignites conversations. While many Americans have characterized his behavior on the social media platform as “unpresidential” in recent polls, it may be solace for these users to know he is subject to the same online rules. In all, it will definitely be interesting to see how Trump’s tweets are archived for future generations.

#ImportanceofPR Rebuilding Delta’s Reputation

It’s no news that Delta Airlines has struggled in keeping their customers loyal within these past few months. From aggressive customer interactions to Delta’s “meltdown” when confronted with a storm in Atlanta, the recent backlash has challenged the company in upholding their brand’s reputation.

One of the largest dilemmas was experienced when severe weather conditions hit Atlanta, Georgia. While it’s expected for there to be complications for any airline during any storm, it took Delta much longer than anticipated to get back on track. The airline canceled about 3,000 flights in one week, causing a massive shutdown that cost the company millions of dollars.

The root of the problem was that through the continuous delaying of flights that prevented members of the flight crews, who were tightly scheduled to jump from one plane to the next, from doing their job. In other words, a domino effect was created.

A flight would be announced as delayed, so that flight would land later than originally planned, which caused another flight to become delayed in waiting for those crew members to arrive from the first flight. This commotion went on for days as Delta predicted the repercussions they’d face with hundreds of dissatisfied travelers on their hands.

Later that month, another altercation occurred when a video went viral of a man being asked to exit his flight. Kima Hamilton had asked to go to the bathroom while the plane was getting ready to take off and was told by an attendant he must remain seated. After a considerable amount of time, the plane had still not taken flight, and Hamilton took advantage of this delay to use the restroom. He had explained to the attendant that it was an emergency, yet was still instructed to leave the aircraft for not obeying authority. The disturbance not only ended in every passenger having to get off of the plane and reboard but also caused a major uproar of people who witnessed the incident on social media and sided with Hamilton.

It soon became clear that Delta was drowning and desperately needed saving. That’s where the power of Public Relations and its influence over consumers came into play. Delta has recently partnered with Vice Media to create a plan called “The Delta Launchpad.” This plan specifically targets young entrepreneurs who may travel often for business purposes and catches their attention with free events. These events were scheduled to take place in three cities key to Delta’s market: Los Angeles, New York, and Seattle.

In the same way that traveling enhances a person’s perspective on culture and the arts, Vice attempted to bring this same sense of entertainment right at home with the use of film, music, and food. The outdoor festivities consisted of music workshops, live performances, panel discussions, screenings and more. Tom Punch, Chief Commercial and Creative Officer of VICE Media, commented on the vision for this plan by saying, “More and more, we’re witnessing young people spending their most precious resources, money and time, to travel to far-flung places and cultural epicenters for the best that music, film, and food have to offer. These experiences indulge their passions but often also shape their future careers. We hope this program becomes both an inspiration and a launchpad for young entrepreneurs across the cultural spectrum.”

Vice’s campaign purpose to strategically cultivate young people’s interests, while also attracting new potential customers has slowly begun to earn back some respect for Delta’s reputation. And while Delta’s road back to success is certainly a long one, the crises the company has faced followed by their partnership with Vice is yet another example of how Public Relations always swoops in to save the day!

The PR Intern Survival Guide

BY: VICTORIA DELLACAVA

pexels-photoInternships are necessary for those interested in working in the public relations field because they allow you to gain the skills necessary to enter the field post-grad. As I prepare to graduate and become a PR professional, I’ve been looking back at my experiences as an intern and realize that I wouldn’t be as prepared for the real world without them. Here are some tips I’ve picked up along the way to helped make your internship as impactful (for both you and your employer) as possible.

 

Know the PR lingo. PR is full or jargon, and it’s easy to get overwhelmed if you’re trying to pick up on all of it at once. Check out our PR Intern Glossary to familiarize yourself with some common PR lingo before you walk in on your first day!

 

Do research on every client/project you’re working on beforehand. Before you start or during your first week, take some time to familiarize yourself with the different clients or company’s you will be working with.

 

Familiarize yourself with the office space and culture. Where does everyone go to take their breaks? Where is the coffee machine? Where can you find a box and labels to send a package? Where is everyone’s favorite lunch/coffee spot in the area? The more familiar you are with the office and the culture, the more comfortable and confident you will feel working there.

 

Have downtime projects. Connect with your supervisor and other employees throughout your internship and see if there are any general projects that you could work on in your downtime. If they don’t give you any, take the initiative to do something on your own like write blog posts for the company’s website, draft social media content for clients or brainstorm new campaign ideas.

 

Be realistic about your timeline. If you’re ever feeling swamped, connect with your supervisor and see if they could help you prioritize your to-do list or give you some extra time for the less time-sensitive projects.

 

Take notes at every meeting. This is good for you to keep track of what is going on and for you to be a reference for others about what was discussed.

 

Make connections with everyone in the company that you can – especially those who you aren’t directly working with.

 

Use employees as a resource. Ask the people you are working with more about how they got to where they are and if they have any advice or feedback for you to become the best professional you can be. This also makes it easier maintain connections after your internship is over.

 

Spellcheck EVERYTHING. This includes everything from press releases, formal presentations and casual emails. If your name’s on it, you want to make sure that it is a positive representation of you and your work.

 

Save everything you worked on. This includes anything you wrote, such as pitches, press releases, social media content, blog posts, research projects and even meeting notes. Make sure you save them all and send them to yourself before the end of the internship so you can reference back to them and use them as writing samples in the future.

 

Have a project to hand in at the end of your internship. Some internship have this built into their program, but if not use this as an opportunity to show that you went above and beyond. This can include a research project, social media plan, an updated campaign strategy, etc.

 

Victoria Dellacava  is a New York-native senior interpersonal communication major with minors in public policy, leadership and advertising. She served on the PRSSA-UD executive board as vice president of professional development, head of PRSSA-UD’s Outreach Committee and social media editor at The Review. To connect with her, follow her on twitter, connect with her on LinkedIn or meet her for coffee at Brew HaHa! 

Greenwash Effect in Public Relations

BY: JAMIE LEVY

Environmental pollution and global warming is an issue around the world and people everywhere are beginning to take action and become more environmentally conscious. Small changes go a long way and help better the environment, such as actions as simple as turning off the lights, saving water, and recycling

 

This global change is impacting the world of public relations by leveraging this shift to positively promote businesses. Many companies are following this environmentally sustainable trend and incorporating it into their business model by following environmental conscious business practices, providing sustainable products, and implementing programs that give back. It is great that businesses are taking action, but what is in it for them is how they share and promote these changes they are making. By incorporating these actions into their communications strategy, they are able to promote to customers how great and world conscious their brand is. Resulting in a consumer that feels better about themselves and the environment when using their product.

 

A company that did a great job of communicating this environmentally sustainable message to their consumers was Sodastream. A product that reduces plastic waste by making soda in the comfort of your own home. They executed a campaign that leveraged April Fools day using Paris Hilton as their “celebrity endorsement” in their spoof advertising campaign. They did an outstanding job making their prank feel like a “real” product. They were able to get an endorsement from an academic professor and launched a fake website and Facebook page a few days before the advertisement launch. Once the ad was launched they made it clear that it was a joke to ensure there was no confusion from viewers.

 

 

The ad begins with Paris Hilton addressing the issue of plastic waste affecting animals globally. She then explains her solution of NanoDrop, a fictitious sparkling water product that will reduce plastic waste. They then explain that it was a mistake and introduce the reveal of the product Sodastream, sharing how making soda at home reduces plastic waste and saves the environment.

 

“I loved working on this campaign as it delivers a really important message in a funny way that empowers everyone to make better choices and promotes a healthier and sustainable way of life,” Hilton said in a statement. The campaign was done by creative agency Allenby Concept House and was able to gain attention in a very overcrowded branded April Fools day prank space. This was an extremely creative way to address the issue of environmental pollution and promote their product in a funny and engaging way.

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Jamie Levy is a junior studying Interpersonal Communication and Advertising with a serious passion for public relations. On the weekends you can find Jamie at the yoga studio, on the beach or playing with her dog Charlie. Follow her journey on Twitter at @jamielevy28.

From PRSSA-UD to Hunter Public Relations

BY:PAUL NAIDAS

This upcoming summer, I have excitedly accepted a summer internship offer at Hunter Public Relations in the heart of New York City, the city that never sleeps. Hunter is a renowned PR agency that has worked with well-known companies such as Barefoot Wines, Tabasco, and Hasbro Games. Their work has promoted values like sustainability with Barefoot wines. Through the UD chapter of PRSSA, I will be working through a program crafted specifically for UD students by Delaware Alumni and Chief Executive Officer of Hunter PR, Grace Leong.

This will be my first time working professionally in the PR field, and I am more than pleased to begin at Hunter. I have worked with a handful of UD’s student groups to dig my hands into the PR profession. While I do not yet know what projects I will specifically be working on, I know that I can be sorted into one of their three main focuses which include Food & Beverage PR, Home & Lifestyle PR, and Health & Beauty PR. I am eager to see what I will be assigned to, and who I will meet along the way. After my time with Hunter this summer, I hope to  move my career forward with an insatiable desire to do great things in public relations. I look forward being able to say that my career’s foundation began with Hunter PR.

For most college students, especially in the Public Relations field, I have found that internships are an extremely competitive hot commodity. Everyone wants to have one for valuable experience and a competitive edge in the job market post-graduation. Through my chapter of PRSSA, I know that I have been provided skills and advice from the various networking opportunities and programs presented to me. Whether it’s PRSSA’s Skill Slams or the Night With the Pros, I know that the opportunities provided for those in PRSSA are well worth the cost of dues for the year. I am glad to have the opportunity to grow as a young professional through a great organization like PRSSA-UD and would recommend that anyone interested in public relations would join their local chapter.

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Paul Naidas is a junior Mass Communications major with a double minor in Spanish and Interactive Media from New Jersey. He is an active member and Public Relations & Social Media manager for Deltones A Cappella and Vice President of Public Relations and Marketing for the Resident Student Association. Find him on Facebook, Instagram, and LinkedIn.

 

A Public Relations Perspective towards Trump’s Absence at the White House Correspondents’ Dinner

BY: GILLIAN ZUCKER

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Photo credit: EPA/Astrid Reckon. Investigative journalists Bob Woodward (left), and Carl Bernstein appear at the White House Correspondents’ dinner with its President, Jeff Mason of Reuters. 

Fake news. It’s a term and overarching concept that’s been circulating the public discourse, brought back to the surface by current U.S. President Donald Trump to influence public view of the credibility of our nation’s media sources.

Trump’s distrust and distaste towards our industry led him to break a presidential tradition and had the whole nation talking. On Saturday, April 29, Trump became the first President since 1981 to skip the White House Correspondents’ Dinner, fondly coined “Nerd Prom” for D.C.-area journalists and media professionals. While guests dined and listened to legendary investigative journalists, Bob Woodward and Carl Bernstein, who cracked the Watergate case, celebrate the First Amendment and the values of the free press in speeches, President Trump held a rally in Pennsylvania celebrating his first 100 days in office.

At the rally, Trump made his feelings towards those in the media known once again to his supporters by stating, “If the media’s job is to be honest and tell the truth, the media deserves a very big fat failing grade.” At the dinner, the media seemed to respond to Trump through the words of the president of the White House Correspondents’ Association and a Reuters journalist, Jeff Mason, by saying, “We are here to celebrate the press, not the presidency. And I am happy to report that this dinner is sold out.”

Of course, the White House Correspondents’ Dinner and the simultaneous Trump rally received natural publicity from online earned media: The Daily Show comedian Hasan Minhaj’s segment of the dinner became a top-searched YouTube video, Trump’s words at his rally were found on every newspaper headline and social media newsfeed, and memes from the night made their way around the Internet.

In addition, around the time that Trump initially announced he wouldn’t attend the dinner, comedian Samantha Bee took the perfect opportunity to plan and execute her own “Not the White House Correspondents’ Dinner” event. From a public relations perspective, Bee strategically positioned her event as a celebration of journalism and its objectivity. Bee and her fellow comedians, such as the legendary Will Ferrell, poked fun at Democrats and Republicans alike with hilarious skits parodying political coverage throughout the year to every little detail of the celebration, such as the “Nasty Woman” cocktail. Overall, her event was a success, even earning higher TV ratings than the actual White House Correspondents’ Dinner.

Through her anti-Nerd Prom party, Bee took a stand and became part of the rallying cry with the press at the White House Correspondents’ Dinner that “fake news” isn’t part of the field of journalism. Instead, to move forward together as a nation, we need to celebrate the truth and finding objectivity in a world of alternative facts, seeing the media as part of the journey towards educating and making a difference in the public dialogue.

 

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By: Gillian Zucker, a spirited Blue Hen sophomore pursuing a degree in Interpersonal Communication and minoring in advertising and writing. Gillian will be serving as PRSSA-UD’S Co-Program Director in the spring of 2018 (when she is back from studying abroad in London!) and currently works with the mascots (Baby Blue and YoUDee), performs community service with her sorority, Gamma Sigma Sigma, and also interns at the University of Delaware Career Services Center working on social media and marketing projects.

PRSSA-UD visits MSLGROUP and Stuntman PR

BY: SAM MURPHY

On Thursday, April 20th, PRSSA- UD had the amazing opportunity of traveling to New York City to visit two unique public relations firms. Our first stop in the Big Apple was MSLGROUP, where we were all enthusiastic to learn more about about one of the top five PR agencies in the entire world. Aside from delicious breakfast pastries and a breathtaking view of the NYC skyline, MSLGROUP had plenty to offer!

Joey Silver, Margarita Miranda- Abate, Kevin Tressler, and Thea Linscott had much to say when discussing their overall focus as an agency. Abate emphasized that there’s nothing more engaging than being able to tell a story for your brand. Her point was further validated when the crew showed us videos of MSL’s top campaign hits that were particularly crafted to stir up emotion, a prime example being their #LikeAGirl Always campaign, which continues to hold millions of people captivated. Our speakers then served as guides in terms of helping us understand our own, individual career paths. They explained that even though advertising, public relations, and media agencies are becoming much more interwoven nowadays, there are still small distinctions that could determine which direction we choose to take in the future.

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In addition to all of the valuable information MSLGROUP shared with us last week, they didn’t let us get away before giving our members some personal insight on the NYC experience. Linscott best described it as a place of endless options, insisting that “there’s more opportunity within 7 blocks of this building than most other places.” NYC is also a great spot to receive agency background, which all our speakers recommended practicing at least once in life, due to the incomparable strategy skills acquired. However, they emphasized that above all else, your main focus should be choosing a city you could picture yourself living in, while still doing what you love (which is PR, of course)!

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After a quick lunch break to eat and refuel, we headed to our next stop, Stuntman PR, a firm primarily focused on promoting culinary businesses. Neil Alumkal and Katherine Liab provided us with a relaxed, conversational setting where we could ask any PR related questions and receive honest feedback by their professional expertise.

A major piece of advice Stuntman reiterated was that if you can’t tell a narrative that will rip through and catch people’s interest, it isn’t worth telling at all. They also shed light on the significance of being able to adapt in such a constantly evolving industry. This includes paying attention to what news is being covered and finding out what people really want to read about. Stuntman mastered this technique with a restaurant- owning client who desired to bring in more customers. They responded with the creative perspective of taking the main food item, dumplings, and remaking them into the largest soup dumplings in NYC. By taking a risk and making their food differently than anyone ever had, Stuntman was able to take a restaurant that previously didn’t even have a printed menu, to bringing them coverage from an abundance of established news outlets. This example highlights Alumkal’s motto that you should always go with your gut, even if the idea seems outrageous at first, which clearly seems to have worked for him thus far!

A key concept Stuntman introduced to us was “backdoor pitching,” which refers to the use of informality to cultivate a journalist/ publicist relationship. In the PR world, Stuntman uses a different technique consisting of casual emails and inviting reporters out for a bite to eat to subtly hook them. This way, they’re establishing a personal bond before a professional one, which Stuntman would agree takes the faceless, robotic aspect out of pitching a story.

Both public relations firms did a great job at developing our understanding of the industry as young PR professionals. We are so grateful to all who took the time to speak with us and make a beautiful day exploring the city that much more memorable!

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Sam Murphy is a freshman Communications Interest Major with a minor in advertising. Along with PRSSA-UD, Sam is currently a member of Alpha Delta Pi sorority.