Measure your Moves

Photo by Scott Akerman

In my Public Relations Plans & Cases class we have been creating, rewriting and reviewing objectives, strategies and tactics. The one thing I – hopefully I am not alone here – cannot seem to grasp is how to measure the results when evaluating the success of a plan. Every time I have to re-read my objective, find the verb and figure out what would it mean to have reached this goal.

The Event Manager Blog posted “20 Tools to Measure Event Marketing”. While this does not have to do with writing a PR plan, it is the core message the article is trying to convey that I want to share with you. The list emphasizes the importance of tracking your work and the money you spend in order to regulate your budget and making sure you are reaching out to all the audiences, and lastly, so at the end of the event you can measure your results.

Scott Akerman – photo

November 30, 2011. Uncategorized. 1 comment.

University of Oregon

November 29, 2011. Tags: , , . Uncategorized. Leave a comment.

Cirque de Soleil does it right

Photo by Ed Schipul

I have not been lucky enough to witness the famous Cirque de Soleil, even so I have only heard great things about the show. Communications Conversations posted an intriguing article about how you can learn public relations lessons from this popular performance. I love how Arik Hanson, the author, was able to watch the show and relate it to PR – this is something I would have never thought of, but it totally makes sense.

It is interesting the way Arik linked the trapeze performers to “considering your customer’s perspective” as well as the costume and set design to “sweat the details”. For public relations and event planning it is principal to work through the eyes of your customers and include them in as many ways as possible. People care most to the things that relate to themselves and want to feel like they are a part of something. The way Cirque de Soleil connects with the audience and allows them to become a part of the show makes viewers more interested.

The design of the show reminded Arik that having a creative design for your brand is essential. Same with event planning, you want people to look at your event or product and remember it. Crique de Soleli has become famous for a reason and one of those reasons being they have extreme attention to design detail. Put effort into every aspect of whatever you are doing/working on because people notice and appreciate it.

For an event, it is obvious when tasks are not completed and things are not fully prepared. You want your customers’ experience to be flawless, time-worthy and pleasing. I have heard that Cirque de Soleil is enriched with outstanding performers, beautiful sets and creative thinking. Your goal is to leave costumers wanting more.

What have you seen recently that has inspired you to better your brand? Whether it be a circus show, movie, a song or a person – it does not matter because it is for your benefit and creative mind.

November 27, 2011. Tags: , , , , , , , . Uncategorized. Leave a comment.

Don’t Forget to Follow Up

In order to measure the success of an event it is imperative to follow up with your attendees – did they enjoy it? Would they recommend it to friends? What would they change? Do they want to learn more? The Event Arc recently shared an article – “5 tips for gathering insight from event attendees using social media”. The post explains how by following up with people and hearing buzz about your event through social media can help improve your next event.

Whether your marketed your event online or not, be sure to inform guests where they can find you online. If you encourage it, the more likely you will be able to form online conversations and discussions pertaining to your event. People always like to share their opinions and thoughts so by providing this outlet, you will gain a great amount of information from your clients. Not to mention, people love rewards and by providing incentives you will definitely find a response.

My favorite tip is one that I will definitely start using – “2. Search out the people who are already talking about your event”. I had never heard of this, but there are multiple sites – Social Mention, Board Reader and Twitter – where you can “search for mentions of your event, product names and your company or brand name”, allowing you to find those who are already chatting about you and/or your event. Pretty legit!

The article also recommends checking up on “location-based connection” sites – Foursquare, Gowalla, Facebook. This is a great suggestion because these types of apps are becoming increasingly popular and people have the ability to include comments and photos when they tag themselves at places/events.

Whenever people question whether or not something is worth their time, they often turn to the internet to read reviews people like them have posted. Be sure to search for these reviews that way you can be in the know about how people feel about your brand and in this case, your event.

Your business can really benefit from social media. It is definitely worth investing your time.

November 26, 2011. Uncategorized. Leave a comment.

life –

isn’t easy, but i love it.

for every hard part there’s 100  good,
but i don’t always notice.

isn’t a choice, we have to deal with it.
– i don’t like that word –
isn’t a choice, be thankful for it.

is beautiful.

is confusing, i don’t think i’ll ever figure it out.
i think i’m okay with that?

i can only control so much.

we only have one.

can end so quickly.
i don’t know if i should think of that more often.

what is the TRUE purpose?
i guess i will find out someday.

is my story.

is meant to be shared
with the ones we love.

is always changing.

live it!

have fun.

November 21, 2011. Uncategorized. Leave a comment.

It All Starts with a Smile

Team work is not always easy, especially if you have someone in the group who turns the creative thinking into a pointless, argument of ideas. has recently posted a list of 8 Fatal Blows – How Creative Thinking Gets Killed by Team Members that I wanted to share because in the event planning industry there are plenty of times where one will have to work with a group to put something together – wedding, exhibit, workshop, conference, party, banquet, etc.

When planning for any kind of event, you need to be creative and come up with ways to make your event special and unique. In a group discussion it is easy to run into scenarios that involve negativity and attitude. It is essential to be conscious of everyone’s ideas and make sure that while you want to contribute as much as you can, that everyone deserves an opportunity to share their ideas.

When I was reading this list, I was thinking in my mind how irritating it is to have individuals in a group who ruin the flow of the imagination. It is extremely important to be a positive person and support one another. In order to have a successful meeting all members need to have an open mind, be honest and be able to take criticism.

Make sure the next time you step into a group meeting to bring a positive and supportive attitude because that will set the tone for the rest of the time together. Once one person becomes negative, it brings down the entire mood. Even a smile can make a difference.

Photo by Michael W. May

November 21, 2011. Tags: , , , , , , . Uncategorized. Leave a comment.

“Event orgainzing is a skilled profession for a reason”

The Marketing Donut – a resource for businesses – has provided a list of dos and don’ts when planning an event. I am a big fan of lists and so I wanted to share with you this valuable information.

If you are trying to plan an event or exhibit you need to make sure you are following all the right steps in order to have a high success rate because like the article says, “Get it wrong and you will never live it down, get it right and you will reap the benefits for months if not years to come.” Every event is different and so you cannot follow the same steps every time. The budgeting, marketing and preparing vary depending on the size of the gathering. Be smart, look at your resources and work with what you got.

The list makes a great point when it explains that if you do not have experience with planning, do not be afraid to bring in experts to help you do the job. There are many details that go behind the scenes and it is easy to forget everything. Event planners are skilled professionals who have great attention to detail. As well, utilizing all your colleagues and dividing up the work so that you can be more efficient – it’s all about teamwork!

When planning an event you have to go full throttle. In order to have an effective function you need to “maximize the the event on all fronts”. Once you have planned one event it is easy to understand the extent of preparation it takes and the amount of time it consumes.

Photo from Alfonso Silóniz

November 18, 2011. Tags: , , , , , , , , , , . Uncategorized. Leave a comment.

How do you Want to Represent Yourself?

The University of Oregon’s popular campus newspaper, Oregon Daily Emerald, shared an important article on “Drunken Facebook” posts and how they can detect serious health issues that students may not be aware of, yet. While the article makes a strong argument about the drinking issues college students have, I wanted to bring up the importance of regulating your Facebook and other social media sites – a discussion that has been drilled into my head the moment I became a journalism student.

It is not breaking news that college students binge drink. It is a common stereotype to vision a college undergrad on a Saturday night with a red cup in one hand and a “half gal” in the other. This is because college kids love to take photos of their drunk nights at their friends house playing beer pong and flip cup all night. What these students seem to be unaware of – along with the physical effects – are the negative effects these photos have on their future.

People make assumptions about others and create an idea of who people are by what their Facebook shows. Profile pictures, albums and statuses are  conscious decisions that you may not know, but portray you in a certain light. These decisions make a good or bad impression on your viewers. If the majority of your photos involve alcohol, drugs and/or being wasted, you are telling people that you love to party and get a little crazy. It is okay to enjoy drinking and have a social life, however do you want your grandma to know that you black out every night?

Photo from Laughing Squid

Potential employers almost always check out candidates’ Facebooks because it tells them a lot about the person. If a company checks out your page and simply finds photos of you drinking or can tell that you are obviously intoxicated, they are going to easily make the decision to cross you off their list. A business is investing in you to do work for their company the last person they want to hire is the college grad that prides themselves in their drinking abilities.

I remind myself every couple months to go through my photos and comments and make sure that there is not any content that I feel misrepresents myself as a professional. Facebook is a site to connect with friends and family, however remember that everything you post is exposed to the internet and even though you can have strict privacy settings, there are ways for others to see your page. Be conscious of all your decisions you make on the internet. You never know who is looking!

November 17, 2011. Tags: , , , , , , , , . Uncategorized. Leave a comment.

For all you Grammar Haters

November 14, 2011. Uncategorized. Leave a comment.

One Social Media Site is Enough

Watch this video of Julius Solaris from my favorite Event Manager Blog posted by

The internet offers a wide variety of social media sites and we are encouraged to be present on all of them. It is overwhelming and often times annoying to have to make an account on all these sites, and half the time we do not even use them. Check out the post by Conference Basics and you will see what Julius recommends is best for effectiveness.

Figure out where most of your followers are and focus your attention on that. If you divide your work on all the sites you are not going to have successful results. If Facebook is where you are most knowledgeable and have a large audience then do most of your branding and promoting there. Also, add links to your blog or website. That way if people want to seek your other sites, they can find it through your main social media site.

This is great advice for event planners that need to promote heavily on the internet. You do not want to overload your audience by spamming all of their newsfeeds.

November 14, 2011. Tags: , , , , , . Uncategorized. Leave a comment.

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