“Develop an Editorial Calendar” – A What?

Good morning, fellow bloggers!

Last week my boss asked me to start working on our editorial calendar. I responded with a blank look on my face. In my mind I was thinking, “I thought those were for high-class magazines like Vogue?” Immediately I felt like Ann Hathaway in “The Devil Wears Prada” when Meryl Streep asked her to pick up 15 jean vests from Calvin Klein. Thankfully my boss was still new to the idea of an editorial calendar too because the Exploreum has never really had anything so consistent or detailed.

The first thing I did, as my teacher says is one of the most important rules in the PR world, was research. I then researched more, and more, and more. *Side note: You have to look beyond Wikipedia.* After finding multiple sources of good content, I felt as though I had at least a starting place. According to Carrie Morgan in her article, “Tips for PR pros planning a 2014 editorial calendar,” she discusses the importance of editorial calendars to agencies as a way to stay ahead of the curve and stay organized. This statement my Morgan reflects the idea behind this useful tool:

“Editorial calendar searches are a basic PR skill, but one that way too many pros gloss over, only do annually, or forget entirely. That’s a mistake, given how aligning your pitches to an editorial calendar bumps your success rate way up.”

Although I will be developing a calendar for in-house non-profit, the idea still works efficiently. Now that I’ve just about finished the details, I realized how setting up this calendar will be beneficial to our marketing and advertising. Learning a new skill isn’t a bad result either.

What new skills have you learned that maybe PR professionals are overlooking? Have you had experience with an editorial calendar? If so, please share your thoughts!

The Capstone Class- Campaigns Time

First week of classes: success. Feelings of stress and being overwhelmed: without a doubt.

Being a senior is already nerve-wracking with the future being more unknown then ever before, but I have to make it to graduation first. Classes this semester will be nothing less than challenging. I already feel as though I’ll be pushed harder than ever and I’m ecstatic. We go through freshmen year and it’s basically a review of every American folktale or algebra problem we did in high school. Sophomore year presented its difficulties, but nothing a few all-nighters couldn’t take care of. Last year felt like freshmen year for me all over again seeing as how at one point I completely changed my major and took 100-level classes to figure out what I was doing with my life. At last I’ve made it to the final round; the light at the end of the tunnel is appearing brighter and brighter.

The capstone class is where we finally take on a real campaign. Knowing that we are working with a real non-profit organization to create an advertising campaign in which we promote their company in the best way is both invigorating and daunting. The project will be done through Protect America’s “Pay if Forward” challenge in which teams from various schools compete against each other to have the best campaign. Our school (University of South Alabama) will be competing with the University of Florida and Michigan State. This opportunity will be very humbling and rewarding at the same time. The chance to get to have this real-life experience will strongly add to our skill-sets and prepare us for the professional life.

No witty saying or wise words to leave you with today, but instead a request. Comment about your campaigns experience and how you worked/or are working through it!

“If your PR/com…

“If your PR/communications career were a house, writing would be its foundation. ” -Warren Weeks

This quote is the reason why I started this blog.

As Christmas break came, I indulged in hours of Law and Order SVU on Netflix with a side of Scandal to go along. Although the comfy life had its perks, I realized I can only do nothing for so long. Having a pause from the non-stop meeting-attending, paper-writing, last-minute-project attempting college life that I face on a daily basis, I decided it was the perfect opportunity to advance my career portfolio. After reading many articles from Media Bistro and e-mail updates from PRSSA, writing was the one skill emphasized over and over again. I kept thinking ” I got an A in English freshmen year and I survived Communication Research Methods with solid feedback of excellence, how could I possibly need to improve my writing?”

Oh how pride is the downfall of many. Keeping up with today’s ever-changing media, strong writing is the one thing that separates PR professionals from the rest. We are the voice for our organization and excellence in writing and communicating is our firm foundation by which we have to abide. I hope this blog continues to enlighten myself as well as maybe a few others who are in the same boat.

In the meantime, just keeping paddling.