Home > Uncategorized > ~Top 10~ Things I learned in COMM 4333

~Top 10~ Things I learned in COMM 4333

10 Things I learned in COMM 4333:

AP Style is the most widely recognized and used style out there.  Though there are many, many others, sometimes even styles specific to a news agency, AP style is the industry standard.  It isn’t always self-explanatory, and will require things that seems arbitrarily decided, but you’ve just got to do it.  It also varies overseas; AP style in the US is different from Europe.

Getting to know a journalist prior to sending them a press release is very important.  Especially if there is an embargo date on the material you are sending, which must be communicated beforehand, as journalists are not required to respect embargo dates.

There are “stock” images people use in press releases, like the classic “grip and grin”.  Despite their popularity, they are POOR images.  Use the rule of thirds, more naturally emotive imagery, and unique perspectives to get a better picture.

Journalists may use your material and not make any reference to your authorship.  Feels like you’ve been cheated, but you’re client is still getting posterity and that’s your job!

Keep your eyes and ears on the news.  Reading and watching it can help your write for print and broadcast, not to mention it’s just a good idea to know what’s going on in the world.  The podcast “Wait Wait!…  Don’t tell me!” and it’s lightning round revealed to me how little news I’m actually aware of!

Blogs are a LOT of work, that is, if you want them to be popular and entertaining!  It’s not a casual thing you do on the side, it’s a dedicated hobby, and for some, a full-time job.  They are however, a powerful and versatile system for expression, communication, and for the reader, learning.

Don’t bribe a journalist.  You may think giving them something for free is a courtesy, heck, you might even think it’ll get your company a good review, or in the paper faster, but it only serves to frustrate and journalist, may damage your relationship with them, or even exclude your client from publication.

There are average words used in everyday language that are trademarked.  Things like Kleenex, Jell-O, and Crock-Pot are all licensed, and must be used correctly, if at all.

If we’re talking important things we learned in general, not just facts, then how to write a News Release and Personality Profile are on the top of my list.  These things are versatile and important not just for PR practitioners, but everyday folk and business owners and associates who might want to get into a publication.

Networking is the most important thing for a PR practitioner, and it is the most important thing in most industries for that matter.  It’s how you get jobs, have the connections you need to perform your job superbly, or just get the opportunity to fulfill the dream of sitting shotgun in a car race.

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