Mary Deming Barber
Comm/PR professional building community within social media; eager to learn and help. Alaska Mom of 2 college boys.
I stand with @KellyeCrane on this one. The advantage to an "agency of one" (I don't freelance) is that you get senior level consultation as clients determine the solutions to their problems, and the "agency" can assemble the best team to execute those solutions.
The challenge for all of us is bringing the right team to the table, but that's a challenge for freelancers and agencies alike...even the big agencies. Do you always have the right team at your fingertips? That's where the relationships come into play that we all need to succeed in this ever changing business.
1 week, 6 days ago on Freelancer vs. Communications Firm: Which is Better?
For members of PRSA I would also add the mentoring program. Members can sign up to work with a members of the College of Fellows on resume review, job coaching, etc. More info and a link to the sign up page: http://www.prsa.org/jobcenter/career_resources/resource_type/strategic_advice/mentor_match/
8 months, 1 week ago on 8 Resources and 3 Tips for PR Job Seekers
I was on vacation last week and am just catching up. You've raised some great issues here and already have some good comments. I really
encourage you to get engaged in PRSA before giving up your membership. I’m
fairly well known as a supporter of the organization and believe it is the
number one place many communicators go to receive information.
Several folks have already mentioned PRSA national’s small
staff, relative to the organization’s vastness. Let me put it another way…there
are about 50 staff people who deal with the needs of over 30,000 members (PRSA
and PRSSA) practicing around the world. Those members are at varying points in
their career and have different practice specialties. That’s one of the reasons
there are so many communities within PRSA, each needing personalized attention
(by that 50 person staff). In fact, PRSA has 111 chapters, 10 districts and 14
professional interest sections, as well as the College of Fellows. That’s 135
different formalized communities before counting PRSSA’s more than 300
chapters. It’s a huge challenge to communicate to each of these members
I was on PRSA’s board (national) when we reviewed and made
some much needed changes to our email program. You see members were complaining
that we were sending too many emails. They weren’t reading them, which meant
they didn’t know what was happening. Since that time, MyPRSA was finalized
which lets you make all kinds of choices about what you want to receive and how
you want to receive it. I know it’s already been suggested but go to MyPRSA (my
profile within the my account tab) and make sure your email preferences are set
the way you want them. If they are, and you’re not getting what you are signed
up for, email the help desk to see what’s up.
While you’re on the site, take a look at the items under the
learning and intelligence tabs. There you’ll find a host of resources to help
you solve most any problem. As a solo professional I think you’ll be interested
in the Find a Firm offering. You’ll also find information about PRSA’s huge
professional development offerings and discover webinars are free to members.
Take a look at the Business Case for PR, a treasure trove of information to
talk with others about our profession.
Having said all this rosy and wonderful stuff about PRSA, it’s
not without its challenges. What trade group representing thousands of diverse
professionals is not? It stands to reason that PRSA is always looking for
volunteers like you who are members looking for ways to solve their problems. If
you have the time to volunteer, you’ll get an amazing ROI and learn even more
about the organization, its benefits and challenges. I’m happy to introduce you
to those on staff or the national board so you can figure out the best fit for
you. I can pretty much guarantee you won’t regret it.
Please renew your membership in PRSA. Even more importantly,
please truly become a member of the organization by volunteering. As always, I’m
happy to answer any questions you may have.
8 months, 4 weeks ago on Five Digital Tactics That Would Bring Fresh Life To PRSA
@kamichat Ha...Maybe. ;-)
1 year, 1 month ago on The 7 commandments of the Solo PR Summit
Arik, I am SO laughing. Glad you learned your lesson too. It's true...thou shall not blow off dinner with PR ladies.
Great to meet you IRL. I look forward to more conversations. And I agree with your assessment of the conference.
I look forward to next year all!
I wish this was only a PR firm issue. Others follow the same practices. I know folks looking for more than a year who have heard back from very few companies. It doesn't seem that hard to be courteous but there are days I wonder. M
1 year, 4 months ago on PR hiring managers: Please read this post
@geoffwelch I hear you on the Facebook thing. It can be annoying when you're tracking it so closely. When we meet IRL, I'll have to show you my "system." It sounds like you have something similar though and the important thing is it works for you.
1 year, 5 months ago on You only Keep the Relationships You Manage
@geoffwelch The Thanks Fairbanks campaign is a great way for people to see 1) the importance of saying thank you and 2) how a small business can support the community. Thanks for doing it.
1 year, 5 months ago on Relationships Remain Key to Success
I join the chorus here Gini. Thanks for such a great explanation. You're always so "johnny on the spot."
1 year, 6 months ago on Hummingbird Update: What it Means for PR Pros
@shelisrael No problem Shel. It was my first typewriter as well. I had trouble unloading it 8 years later when it was already worthless. I guess people forgot how "high end" the corrected cartridge models were. I'm glad you had the same one. I thoroughly enjoyed the book and hope sales go through the roof for you guys.
1 year, 6 months ago on Context is Everything…and it Will Become Even More So
@KarenD.Swim Thanks Karen. You're pointing out exactly why i really liked this book. The technology really fascinates and scares me. The book helped assuage the scary feelings and embrace some of what's coming. Still apprehensive but I think you'll really like the book.
@geoffwelch I agree with you Geoff and think sometimes we forget that companies are made up of people so they really don't need to reinvent in public. (Note I did NOT say companies ARE people as that's another subject entirely)
1 year, 6 months ago on Engagement Is Critical for Today’s Communicators. Getting there is Hard.
@dariasteigman I definitely think amplification and immediacy are issues in social media. I think that's what makes it especially hard to tackle too. It's easy of us to get caught up in that immediacy and not wait to respond as we could do with email.
1 year, 7 months ago on Online Bullies – Are They Really That Different From Regular Bullies?
@3HatsComm I agree Davina about the fact versus subjective discussion. That can often be the crux of the problem and why it's best to walk away. But when we see the same people over and over it can be terribly difficult. Listening, and hearing, are skills we all need to work on.
@KarenD.Swim Thanks for reading Karen. I agree that this is only a growing problem. I would like to think those who are bullying will see posts like this and CivilNation but I fear they won't. We need to keep pushing for change and also support those who are being bullied.
@ayatlin I love that you and Ermalina are attending that session and hope you'll write about it on your blog.
1 year, 8 months ago on How Teaching a Language and Vine Go Hand in Hand
@Shonali A younger Shonali might not have called him on it but that's also what makes this post powerful. It shows "younger Shonalis" that they CAN do it and not suffer. In fact, they are praised by their colleagues for doing so.
1 year, 8 months ago on When Social Media Freed the Inadvertent Bigot
What a wonderful post and an example of how social media "frees" us to say what we wish but definitely doesn't free us from the thoughtlessness of our remarks. I believe you handled this really well and applaud you for doing so.
1 year, 9 months ago on When Social Media Freed the Inadvertent Bigot
@ginidietrich I agree. I thought my heart had already sunk pretty low with the news itself but it went so much lower with that.
1 year, 9 months ago on Rest in Peace, Arthur Yann
Well said Gini. Arthur is one of those friends you kind of take for granted. You know he's there when you need him. I'm counting on continuing to guide all of us as we tackle the big challenges in his name. A very good soul lost way too soon. I am sad on so many levels but especially for the lights of his life Amy and little Sofia, whose third birthday party was to be Saturday.
@RobBiesenbach I'll figure out a way to message you my phone number just in case you have time.
1 year, 9 months ago on Why Mediocre Writing Is All Jane Austen’s Fault
@RobBiesenbach What a small small word Rob. You are correct that this year was pretty miserable. It snowed just two weeks ago which was really not okay, but did break the record for the longest snow season. Last year we broke the record for the amount of snow so a lot of us who aren't "from here" are pretty grumpy. Fun that you come up every year. If you have time for coffee let me know. It's always fun to meet people IRL.
1 year, 10 months ago on Why Mediocre Writing Is All Jane Austen’s Fault
@Shonali @RobBiesenbach thanks for the shootout Shonali, both in the post and here. I've been terribly behind on my reading. Work is busy, but more importantly here in Alaska, the sun is out! No one wants to be inside. That post was fun to write and maybe needs a new revision like you've written here. If I read pieces such as you've discussed here I find myself thoroughly doubting the entire piece. I don't understand why people can't just research it and then say it.
@HeatherTweedy I had the same reaction Heather. I was aghast that Shonali couldn't like Austen. I'm glad we didn't all have to give her what for...at least not yet.
@Gretchen Fauske That looks interesting. I'll have to put it in the queue.
1 year, 10 months ago on Tool Time — Presentations
@Shonali I suggested that to her as well. Personally, I would love to be featured. We also talked about her posting some friendly news and photos about the town on her Facebook page. I'm really happy that she's started doing that. She's just not used to doing this so I think it will be baby steps.
1 year, 11 months ago on Sometimes All You Need Is A Fresh Set of Eyes
@Shonali Thanks Shonali. It was a fun morning. She was concerned she was divulging personal information by telling her guests' stories. I told her she really wasn't, especially if she doesn't use names. I don't think that's an issue, do you?
I don't know that they even know who they want to be the scapegoat either. That's part of the issue. Reince says something and then another faction says something completely opposite. It's really a mess. I'm all for a third party -- or just avote where the top two candidates move on to the general...but then we'd have to get rid of the Electoral College. That's another post.
1 year, 11 months ago on Goodbye Republican Party, It’s YOU Not Me
I hear you Jeff. I became independent last August over a similar situation in my locale. But I had been a registered R for 36 years! Like you, the party left me; I did not leave it. I posted the change on my Facebook page and was amazed at the thoughtful and insightful comments from friends on both sides of the aisle. It made me feel better about the decision. Welcome to the crowd of "independents." Together we will change the world...or at least our corners of the US.
I agree with you Jessica and think this week's events have really demonstrated the need for restraint. We seem to feel a sense of entitlement to this information.
I hope you had a great day today. It was fun to chat this morning. Best of luck with your college decision. You know where I hope you'll go.
1 year, 11 months ago on We need to know now…or do we?
I don't think RSS is dead but that may be because I'm using it differently. I use Reader/Feedly/whatever tool to make sure I'm reading articles my clients need me to read. If I'm not "on Twitter" all day I could very easily miss those.
I also have things in my Reader feed I don't follow on Twitter because, while it's important to read them for my business, I don't care for their Twitter feeds. For me to replace RSS with Twitter would mean I'm only reading those items I choose to read and that means I'm seeing the world through rose colored glasses. Doing so doesn't benefit me or my clients.
1 year, 11 months ago on On The Death Of Google Reader
@ginidietrich Oh, I agree. It's archaic. Did you read at least the first few paragraphs of the article? Embarrassing to think there are still people who believe it but there are. I don't understand, and then they wonder why people sneak around doing all this work on phones and iPads that get around their systems.
2 years ago on Treat People Like Adults and You’ll Have High Productivity
Not supporting this, as you know, but there are plenty of dinosaurs out there who still don't understand social media has a rubies in life, business and especially as a communications tool. Take, for example, the Alaska House who spent the good art of an afternoon discussing opening access to Facebook: http://www.seattlepi.com/news/article/Should-AK-legislative-employees-access-Facebook-4379375.php. Amazing but true...and we elected them!
Good thoughts here Arik that I'm sure your local committee, and other PR award committees will consider. I'm glad to hear you're going to join PRSA again as you know how relevant I consider it. And, I'm sure the Classics committee is always looking for volunteers of your caliber and great ideas for the event.
2 years ago on 5 ideas to make the Minnesota Classics even better
@ojezap Okay that's what I thought but wanted to make sure. I'm hoping it all works smoothly.
2 years ago on 8 reasons Feedly will make you forget all about Google Reader
@ojezap Interesting discussion. I have the same sorts of apprehensions about Feedly's seamless transition but think it's the best I've seen and wonder what your preferred alternative is?
@HeatherWhaling Darn! I hoped you had some magic bullet but that's what I figured I would do as well. I'll let you know if I find another solution.
2 years ago on The Secret (often Missing) Ingredient in Influencer Relations
Great post Heather. I'm experimenting with IFTTT and have a question...I really like your idea of...if I buffer this, then bookmark it. But...how did you decide what to make the bookmark tag? They are specific to each article.
@rajean Thanks for pinning it to your board. I'll check your board out. I have to admit I haven't done as much on Pinterest as I should. But I need to try to make time...for that and G+ and....
2 years ago on Public Relations – More than Press Releases
@ayatlin Thanks Angela. We all need reminders don't we. It was fun to see you yesterday. Enjoy your free classes!
2 years ago on Only One Chance to Make a Good Impression
@LisaBrock Thank you Lisa. I'm glad you liked it. If you're interested, here's a link to the livestream of presentation I did at my alma mater talking about the transition from student to professional. There are two parts to the livestream with the first one being lowest on the page: http://www.whitman.edu/student-life/student-engagement-center/internships-and-jobs/networking/social-media-workshop
@ginidietrich It amuses me when stones are thrown by journalists period. My grandmother used to say the people who live in glass houses should not thrown stones. That seems especially true in this case.
2 years, 2 months ago on Survey Says: PR Pros Use too Many Buzzwords
I'd like to "drill down" this list to see what else we might extrapolate. We use these big, fancy words because we want to sound important and knowledgeable, but all it does is confuse others and make us look silly. I wish we could all stop.
Having said that, I don't think this is just a PR industry problem. Having sat through briefings for other fields I think each has its own buzzwords and expressions the rest of us don't understand. The military lexicon is especially fraught with acronyms and expressions lay people don't understand. I'll never forget attending a lunch event with my husband to which all spouses were invited. The speaker started out by saying he didn't expect the civilians in the audience (at least half of it) to understand and we'd have to deal with it. Imagine the reviews that event received!
Have a wonderful time as I'm sure you will. Many of us have two homes...at least in our hearts. And I think that's okay. I still call Portland my hometown and have wonderful memories and friends there...and family. I'm guessing that you'll make new memories while you're there that rekindle your India home and that you'll be grateful to return to DC and your American home. We all need to keep room for both places in our hearts so we remember where we've been and what made us who we are today. Have a wonderful time. Try to relax and just go with the flow. Can't wait to hear about it when you return. Merry Christmas!
2 years, 3 months ago on Home for the Holidays
Great post Rachel. I've actually had this conversation with several providers and hope some who specialize in health care PR will weigh in as well. The problem is HIPPA but it's also a concern about wrong diagnoses and the threat of malpractice. Many are afraid to dispense advice when they haven't actually examined the patient. At the same time, we're starting to see some movement in these areas, and I believe that will only grow as communication changes.
For example, here in Alaska many dental and medical providers offering tele-medicine to rural providers. This type of service is often life-saving here as it's often the only way services can be provided to these small regions.
It's going to be interesting to watch the growth and changes in this part of the field.
2 years, 4 months ago on Social Media: The Key to Transforming Doctor-Patient Communication
Great recap Shonali. What a wonderful conference with a good mix of learning, friends, food, fun and inspiration. I wish we had more time to spend together though. We'll have to try again before next year in Philadelphia.
2 years, 5 months ago on Highlights from the 2012 PRSA International Conference #prsaicon
I, like you, struggle with the fact some people think PR is all about media relations. Where we differ is whether it's most/many/few/some. I like to think that many PR pros understand there's a lot more to PR than media relations. I also don't really see how the new PRSA definition discusses media relations. The fact is doesn't is one of the things I liked about it a lot. There are so many ways we can build mutually beneficial relationships without doing media relations.
The part about understanding business is critical and something I've heard a lot about for years. If we, as professionals, don't understand what our CEOs are saying, we can't possibly help them create "mutually beneficial relationships with our publics." As strongly as I believe we need to understand the language of business, the reverse is also true. MBA programs should include classes around public relations so their graduates understand the role of communications in their businesses success. It's taken years but PRSA has been working with MBA programs (http://media.prsa.org/article_display.cfm?article_id=2637 to begin offering those programs. I think it's a step in the right direction, and hope others will start learning these lessons too.
Thanks for raising the profile of this issue again.
2 years, 6 months ago on Self-Hating PR Pros and the Change in Industry
@ginidietrich it's the link bait that really gets to me. They aren't about doing what's right. They are about doing what generates clients in the short term.
2 years, 7 months ago on Marketing is Dead?
I am so tired of the ____ is dead posts from people who really don't understand but instead want to promote their latest shiny penny. There are so many more important things in our world to be concerned about that which communications discipline is dead this week. But, as long as these folks continue to get business this way, and keep the rest of us frustrated, it will continue. I really appreciate your writing this post and hope it will make a difference.
@HowieG @shonali @rachaelseda @Ancita @KDillabough @Krista @ShakirahDawud @CarolHamptonRasco I was hoping for mini skirts, poorboys and fishnets.
2 years, 7 months ago on The Intern and the Executive Coach, Part II: Criminal