We Are Communication Architects

Building brand awareness through content creation and community engagement.

December 16th, 2014

Voce Student Weekly Reading 12/16: Gift Guide for Social Media Lovers, Possible ‘Dislike’ Facebook Button & More

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Social Media

A Holiday Gift Guide for Social Media Lovers

“The majestic social media lover, someone who is on top of trends, tech-savvy and spends a lot of time plugged in. While these are great traits from a career perspective, they don’t always make for an easy gift target. What do you get someone who knows about everything as it launches in real-time?”

Voce Insight – Besides the fun items on this list, any of the books included would likely help you add weight to your words on social media. Reading about your field and those who helped start it will set you apart from many of your peers.

Mark Zuckerberg: Facebook is ‘thinking about’ a dislike button

“Everyone feels like they can just push the Like button, and that’s an important way to sympathize or empathize with someone,” Zuckerberg told the audience. But there are times when you may want the simplicity of a one-click response but a “like” doesn’t feel appropriate, he added.”

Voce Insight – This would be a significant move for Facebook – having the ability to express other sentiments other than “like” could open many more possibilities for social media professionals and their clients. It would be wise to start thinking about how your content could garner more than just “likes.”

Public Relations

5 terrible headline habits

No matter whether it’s a sign in Times Square or a post on a fast-paced social media network, headlines compete for attention in a crowded landscape. Make your headlines more attention-grabbing by avoiding the worst headline habits.

Voce Insight – The headline is the most important part of your press release. As you’re starting off your career, you want to ensure that you don’t pick up bad habits that will linger with you in the future. Try to avoid stuffing the title with too many unnecessary keywords. Search engines are limited to the number of characters they can display in index results, and filling the title with the same keyword can have a negative impact on SEO.

Follow This 3-Step Process to Land Your Dream PR Internship

“Use the subject line “you were once a college student too.” This subject line also works if you say “college graduate.” This line is unique and relatable, so your chances are high they will open it. Keep the email short and sweet – less than a paragraph. Say who you are, why you admire them (nothing cheesy, do some research), and ask if you can take them for coffee (pick somewhere near their office and convenient for them) to ask them a few questions.”

Voce Insight – These days, the competition for an internship is fierce. It’s important to do whatever you can to stand out from the crowd. Instead of just sending a regular email with your “your name Resume” in the subject line, try to be creative. That creativity may mean the difference between your email being opened, or tossed in the trash.

Career

Setting Yourself Up for Success: End of Year Goal Setting

“Come up with three things that you would like to accomplish within the next twelve months. Be sure that they are realistic and attainable. Next, write them down. I like to place my goals somewhere I will see them daily, like hanging on my bathroom mirror or as the background on my phone, so that I have a constant reminder of what I am working towards.”

Voce Insight – As 2014 is coming to an end, we want to encourage everyone to set goals for 2015. Whether you have graduated and are looking for a job or if you’re finishing up your undergraduate career, it’s important to set achievable goals. Having a clear vision of the end state we are trying to achieve before we take action to reach our goals is the key factor in accomplishing any goals that we set. Using one sentence or a concise paragraph, write your career vision. Consider writing a short vision statement along with a short description of how you currently see yourself accomplishing it – reaching your vision.

4 Simple Ways to Stop Feeling So Stressed At Work

Our brains are constantly producing negative thoughts about ourselves and others, and we have a habit of reliving the past or ruminating about the future. The network of brain regions that generate this thinking originally developed to help us plan tasks, review the past and improve future behavior.

Voce Insight – WIth a high-stress job such as those in PR or Social Media, it’s easy to get overwhelmed and anxious. However, it’s important to take steps to combat that stress before you end up getting burned out. Identify your emotional triggers and learn what works best to calm you down, whether that be stepping out of the office for five minutes, going to the gym on your lunch break, etc. You will never 100% get rid of stress, but you can effectively manage it so it doesn’t control your life.

Filed in Career Development, Weekly Reading

December 9th, 2014

Voce Student Weekly Reading 12/9: How to Get Followers on Social Media, Top Global Trends in PR & More

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Social Media

Know What’s Working on Social Media: 19 Free Social Media Analytics Tools

The Riffle browser extension adds an overlay to the Twitter profiles you visit, showing stats like retweets per tweet and favorites per tweet as well as info on the top hashtags, mentions, and urls that appear in one’s Twitter timeline.

Voce Insight – This browser extension works in a way that’s similar to how Rapporative works for email, by providing an additional layer of information about the person you’re connecting and talking with. That can be a useful thing especially as you’re starting out so you can learn a bit more about your growing network and, in this case, can help you see who can truly be called an influencer.

How to Get Your First 1,000 Followers on Every Major Social Network

Many users on Twitter will follow back those who follow them. This is a popular strategy for those just starting out on Twitter to help connect with others, and thanks to Twitter lists, users can customize the information they see on Twitter, which makes following tons of people all the easier to manage.

Voce Insight – Gaining followers on social media platforms isn’t an easy task. For starters, you want to start by following likeminded people in the business. Surround yourself with a network of people that value your brand and expertise, so that you can become an influencer among them. You want to be sure that you post on your social channels consistently. Don’t let weeks pass by – remain consistent. Most importantly, a little light humor can go a long way toward humanizing your personal brand.

Public Relations

Top Global Trends in PR Today

“Because PR People are, in general, poorly read they fail in one other important regard. Thinking. If you read a lot then you will learn to think. Thinking – staying abreast of how to think – is what clients pay us to do. So often, even our best consultants, repeat what they have done for others and fail to reflect on what a clien needs because they do not think…think…think”

Voce Insight – There is a great deal of noise in the media landscape today, and a lot to read. Dedicating as little as 30 minutes a day to reading what your favorite reporters are covering, whatever trade publication is applicable to you, or anyone else who writes well and has something important to say will certainly help you in your career.

11 reasons why journalists don’t reply to your pitches

“10. You pitched like you were selling something. I see this often; it still makes me angry. PR is not advertising. Your pitch must be descriptive, compelling and persuasive, not pushy, self-promotional or obnoxious. Your pitch should be about the reporter and her publication’s needs, not your own.”

Voce Insight – Leave marketing language and advertising copy out of your pitch. Be genuine and straightforward with journalists. Get straight to the point and express why their readers would be interested. This kind of pitch respects both journalists’ time and their need to tell a story, rather than sell your product.

Career

How to take charge of your job search

Whether you’re looking for a promotion or fancy a complete career change, taking charge of your job search is a must. With a positive attitude, plenty of ambition and lots of hard work you’re sure to find something that’s worth getting up for every morning, so here’s how to land the role of your dreams.

Voce Insight – Everybody knows somebody. Within your existing network there are probably three jobs that would be appropriate for you, but the people who could help open doors to those jobs just haven’t thought of you. Make a list of everyone you know. Set a goal to touch base with three people you have not talked to for a year or more. LinkedIn is a powerful tool to easily connect with the right people. Search your target market based on your industry, qualifications, university and interests, and connect with the people who interest you.

How to Write a Cover Letter That Gets Noticed

Your cover letter is a business letter, so it should be businesslike. However, you’ll make a stronger impression if you avoid “business-ese.” Your tone should be intelligent, polite and professional, as though you’re addressing a senior colleague.

Voce Insight – One great step you can take when working on your cover letter is to do some research and try to find out who the hiring manager is. Greeting someone with their name, rather than “to whom it may concern” is an easy way to stand out. At minimum, you can write in your own voice, as the article suggests. Write genuinely, as you would to another person, rather than a nameless entity on the other end of an HR email list.

Filed in Career Development, Weekly Reading

December 2nd, 2014

Voce Student Weekly Reading 12/2: How to Get More Twitter Followers, Why You’re Still an Intern & More

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Social Media

Get More Followers And Increase Engagement With These 7 Counterintuitive Twitter Tips

“Occasionally, you may have the opportunity to engage with individuals and share with your community about some awesome things going on at your site—new products, new announcements, new ways to connect and share with one another. You don’t have to be shy with promoting (more on this below). It also feels great to do so in the right way.”

Voce Insight – New York Times Columnist David Carr once described Twitter “as a river of data rushing past that I dip a cup into every once in a while.” While Twitter can be an extraordinary tool, it can also be overwhelming when it isn’t organized well. Remembering that everyone has to deal with the same information onslaught will go a long way to ensure your tweet ends up in more peoples’ cups.

39 Blogging Tools to Help You Work Faster, Write Better, and Land More Readers

“When you’re finding amazing content to share on social media—the kind of thing that grabs attention and gets people to click, share, and comment—one of the most valuable, most original places to turn is your own blog and the content you personally create.”

Voce Insight – Photoshop is the king of image software. Gimp is like a free version of Photoshop. Mostly all of the major features are there, and amateur designers can get all sorts of things done with layers, masks, photo effects and more. Looking for exciting new tools to simplify the blogging experience? Check out this article for today’s hottest blogging tools!

Public Relations

Writing Rules PR Pros Should Know

“In public relations, writing is everything. Whether it’s in a press release, on a blog, or social media, your writing proficiency is vital. Many professionals fear writing for a number of reasons; among them is that there are so many confusing rules.”

Voce Insight – Even the most well thought out press release or pitch can fall prey to these simple errors. Adhering to AP style and keeping a cheat sheet of these common writing obstacles could be very helpful when you’re starting out.

5 Reasons Why You’re Still at the Intern Table (and not the PR Assistant Desk)

“You have to be something really special to turn your PR internship into a job. Be ready to be the first one there and the last one to leave. Never look like you have nothing to do and if you really do have nothing to do, ask for another task. You need to show that you want to learn at the firm and you can prove to be an asset to the team. If your boss can’t imagine a day without you, a paycheck may be in your future.”

Voce Insight – Don’t be shy about asking questions, especially if you need clarification on an assignment. Carry a notebook with you at all times. Be energetic and alert, but don’t pretend to know something you don’t. When you first start your internship, make it a point to sit down with your manager to set goals for yourself. You want to work towards something bigger everyday of your internship.

Career

How To Use The Job Description To Your Best Advantage

“Gone are the days of applying for seemingly every job under the sun in the same manner of throwing spaghetti onto the wall and just seeing what sticks. Job search today is all about targeting: the exact type of job you want, and the exact type of employer for whom you’d like to work.”

Voce Insight – People often disregard the importance of a job description. These descriptions are helpful tools for both managers and the job seeker. They help managers set clear expectations of employees, and they help the potential employees know their scope of work and what is expected of them. A job description should be a fluid thing, so use it to your advantage when you’re seeking advancement in your company. If you take on new responsibilities, ask that they be added to your job description so they can be included in your evaluation.

The Top 5 Things to Avoid in an Internship Interview

“If you are genuinely interested in the company and what they do you’ll likely have a bunch of questions for them. If you don’t ask questions, it’s effectively like you’re saying “no, thanks, I’m not actually that interested in what you guys do and I want to get out of here as soon as possible.”

Voce Insight – You may be surprised at how many students really think they can go to an interview without any preparation whatsoever. It should be common knowledge to do at least SOME research about the company you’re about to interview for. When an interviewer asks you, “Do you have any questions?” at the end of your interview, please don’t say “no, thanks, you’ve answered all my questions.” There should always, always be questions! Read this article for interview no no’s.

Filed in Career Development, Weekly Reading

November 25th, 2014

Voce Student Weekly Reading 11/25: Tips on Rocking Your First Job, 2015 Social Media Marketing Trends, & More

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Social Media

10 Things to Never Share on Your Company’s Social Media Accounts

“Social media is, essentially, an open forum. Some people will use it to compliment your business, and others will criticize it. No matter what happens, don’t respond with a counterattack. Meeting negativity with more negativity will make your business seem immature, petty, and vengeful. Instead, respond to negative posts with calm understanding.”

Voce Insight – While social media platforms allow for more flexibility in content and voice than traditional platforms, it is still important to be extra careful when publishing new posts. The key is to make sure you keep the same tone as your company through every post you push live. At Voce, the social platforms for PlayStation and Disney are completely different. It is important to familiarize yourself with the voice and tone of your company on social platforms.

The Top 7 Social Media Marketing Trends That Will Dominate 2015

“As Facebook continues to limit the number of posts page fans actually see, the demand for promoted posts and ads will continue to increase. And with this increased demand will come increased pricing.”

Voce Insight – Every year, social media experts put out their predictions on what trends will occur the following year. With Facebook advertising pricing on the rise, and organic reach on the decline, brands that rely primarily on Facebook for marketing may need to consider other options, or reevaluate their advertising budget.

Public Relations

5 press release gaffes PR pros should avoid

“We spend so much time on the body of the press release getting the word count down, fine-tuning the language, and making the first sentence intriguing enough that readers keep going. In return, we forget that if the title isn’t amazing, nobody will read the body. Your ideal title is concise, enlightening, and interesting. If it’s confusing or boring, nobody will care about the rest of the release. The PR world is riddled with the corpses of great releases with awful titles.”

Voce Insight – The title and first few sentences of your press release will determine whether or not a reporter decides to write about you. Invest more time on this small, but critical part of your release and you will likely find that everything else comes a little more easily.

Marketing lessons from Dr. Seuss

“‘So the writer who breeds more words than he needs is making a chore for the reader who reads.’ Lesson: We’d hate to be guilty of this, so we’ll just say that clear, simple, and brief is the best policy. In today’s crowded online world, if you capture readers’ attention, you’ve won half the battle.”

Voce Insight – These Seuss sayings apply equally to writing pitches, press releases and contributed content for your PR clients. Use words wisely – conveying a lot with a little and in interesting ways will ensure you succeed – “ninety-eight and three-quarters percent guaranteed.”

Career

6 Tips to Rock Your First Job

“In high school, teachers prodded you to get your work turned in on time, but once you transitioned to college, you didn’t have that extra support from professors. With your first job, you have another transition: Your boss isn’t going to look over your shoulder constantly or always tell you what you need to do.”

Voce Insight – When it comes to your first professional job, it’s important to go above and beyond. Doing just your day to day work may keep you from getting fired, but it won’t get you noticed or promoted. You should consistently be looking for ways to improve your workflow and volunteer for extra projects. Taking the initiative will show your manager that you are dedicated and committed to excelling in your career.

7 Bad Habits To Drop If You Want To Be Successful

“What is it that’s stopping you from moving further up the food chain? As a result of social conditioning, many people begin placing limitations on their success as they reach certain stages of their career. Successful people don’t do this. They invite challenges and limitations and they break down barriers.”

Voce Insight – Like many areas of life, success is not an easy thing to attain. However, this may work to your advantage! If being successful at a job were easy, then everyone would be doing it and that wouldn’t leave much room for you to stand out. We know habits are hard to break, but would it be easier if we told you that it will lead to a successful path? This article highlights seven bad habits that you must break in order to be successful in college, your career and life.

Filed in Career Development, Weekly Reading

November 18th, 2014

Voce Student Weekly Reading 11/18: Twitter Tips, Facebook’s Privacy Policy & More

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Social Media

New E-book! Our Best Twitter Tips: 33 Ways to Get the Most Value Out of Twitter

“We love learning how to get more followers, earn more clicks, and share better content. Twitter represents a huge—and free!—opportunity for marketers to distribute content, engage with others in their industry, and promote their brand online. And we’re keen to find the absolute best way to get the most value out of Twitter.”

Voce Insight – Using a scheduling tool is a great way to get your content to your followers, allowing you to space out posts in between breaking news beats. However, it’s important to remember that sometimes scheduling content has its risks, especially if there is a crisis that happens in the world, so it’s important to be watching the news and know how and when to remove scheduled posts.

Facebook Finally Puts its Privacy Policy in Plain English

“The company introduced a page called Privacy Basics, which tells users how to manage settings — including photo tags and what others can see about you — that’s not just for friends, but also advertisers.”

Voce Insight – Facebook is putting the power back in the hands of its users by making their privacy settings more easy to manage. Instead of having to search and dig through settings, users can now easily update their privacy settings to be as lenient or as strict as they like. Students should update their privacy settings regularly, that way you don’t get tagged in an image that you would rather not have the world see. As always, keeping your Facebook profile “employer-friendly” is of utmost importance.

Public Relations

4 Tips for Using Twitter to Pitch Journalists

“It’s good practice to cross-reference the information in your media database with the information the reporter is sharing with the world. This isn’t about using Twitter to pitch—it’s about using the platform to develop a more informed pitch.”

Voce Insight – Even if you’re not pitching the reporter directly through Twitter, the platform is an excellent way to better understand where a journalist is coming from. The bio on the website of the publication (or publications) they write for may be outdated or somehow less comprehensive than the contents of an extended Twitter feed. Following the most important reporters in given field will make your media lists more accurate and your pitches more informed.

Is the phone call completely dead in PR?

“One of the downsides of email and texting is the shorter messages–the inability to explain EVERYTHING in an email. We’ve all been a part of the 45-email-long chains of back-and-forth messages about a particular project.”

Voce Insight – Sticking to email may more convenient for an uncertain schedule, but this sacrifices the depth of communication inherent in a phone call or a face to face interaction. Much more can be conveyed in a short amount of time over the phone, which often makes it the best option, whether you’re talking to a client or a reporter; don’t be shy to pick up and dial.

Career

Here’s What You Say When An Interviewer Says, ‘Tell Me About Yourself’

“This is typically the first question that’s always asked in an interview. This question is asked because it sets the tone of ‘Brand You.’ It lets the interviewer know who you are, what you’re about, and what motivates you. This question is important because the interviewer will use it as a control mechanism to determine your truthfulness and consistency in the way you answer the upcoming questions.”

Voce Insight – It’s one of the most frequently asked interview questions: Tell me about yourself. Your response to this request will set the tone for the rest of the interview. For some, this is the most challenging question to answer, as they wonder what the interviewer really wants to know and what information they should include. The secret to responding to this free-form request successfully is to focus, script and practice. You cannot afford to wing this answer, as it will affect the rest of the interview. Begin to think about what you want the interviewer to know about you.

Five Tips for Getting the Most Out of College

“Although test scores and grades are important, as you choose a major, also begin to plan internships in different industries that suit you and your skillset. “It’s not just to get your foot in the door,” says Dobroksi.”

Voce Insight – Branch out and take a class in an obscure topic that interests you. This will make you think differently and potentially inspire you in the future in unexpected ways. You have a ton of activities to balance while you’re at college. When you have to fit so much in, it’s really important you adhere to a schedule. It’s better to get heavily involved in two or three extracurricular activities, rather than shallowly involved in a ton of extracurriculars.

Filed in Career Development, Weekly Reading

November 11th, 2014

Voce Student Weekly Reading 11/11: 6 Reasons Why You Didn’t Get that Job, Personal Branding Tips & More

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How the End of Facebook “Like-Gating” Will Benefit Brands

“Marketers running “like-gated” promotions often wondered whether the hundreds of new fans they were amassing were only doing it for the incentive. Now, by removing direct incentives the came with a Facebook “like,” you’re ensuring that new fans really do have an affinity for your brand and are more likely to engage with your page’s content.”

Voce Insight- While some brands are balking at the idea of getting rid of like-gating, the benefits far outweigh the risks. One of the biggest benefits is brands will now be encouraging more engagement and beneficial followers to come to their pages, versus just people who have no interest in your brand but want to win a contest. Having followers who engage with your page is essential for sustaining and increasing your post organic reach.

The Lazy Person’s Guide to Personal Branding

“Thanks to the Internet, everyone can present a shiny, online version of themselves as a quick way to cash in. Personal brands are no longer just for stars like Oprah or Beyoncé. It’s an important way to set yourself apart from the loud voices crowding online culture.”

Voce Insight – Personal branding is merely a way of selling yourself, and it’s never been more important, thanks to social media. Social media has given us a platform to broadcast our personal messaging to accomplish our goals. Always use your personal brand as your guide whenever you are engaging on social media. Consider how to use each outlet to accomplish your goals, both personally and professionally.

Public Relations

Public Relations Problems You Never Expected When You First Started Out

“Do you love sleeping as much as I do? If you’re going into PR, it may be time to get used to a new schedule. One problem that’s popped up over the years isn’t just the long hours – it’s the odd hours.”

Voce Insight- PR comes with its frustrations, sometimes in the form of clients who insist on going against what you feel to the best guidance you can offer. However, we do get paid for expertise clients usually lack. Remembering this is how we pay the rent helps make the work more manageable.

7 Simple Do’s and Dont’s for Planning a Stress-Free Client Event

“According to Forbes, event coordination is the fifth-most-stressful career path of 2014 (coming in dangerously close behind military officials, firefighters, and airplane pilots). Planning an event can be a horrendous, pressure-filled process for anyone, but it doesn’t have to be.”

Voce Insight- As much as you can, plan for the unplanned to happen at a client event. Gathering so many people together, especially when it involves air travel, introduces a lot of variables out of your control. Having a backup plan to the backup plan will help you keep your head.

Career

6 Reasons You Didn’t Get the Job (That No One Will Ever Tell You)

“Don’t get me wrong: Confidence in an interview is essential, and apparently it’s even good to be a little narcissistic. But don’t step over the line toward being arrogant. This can really rub people the wrong way and make you seem a little hard to manage.”

Voce Insight- One of the toughest things about job searching is when you don’t get the job. You can apply for many jobs, hundreds in some cases, and never hear anything about your application. In order to learn from this difficult experience and refine your job search techniques, it’s important to reflect upon all aspects of your job search and interview process.

5 Words That Can Doom Your Career

“Like most default modes, “To whom it may concern” is effortless — in other words, lazy. And when you’re job-hunting, that’s not the first impression you want to give. It conveys the message that you couldn’t — or couldn’t be bothered to — figure out the name of the hiring manager who’s going to read it.”

Voce Insight- Rather than just using “to whom it may concern” as a header in your resume email, dig a little deeper. See if you can track down the hiring managers name on LinkedIn or via a Google search. Making your email personalized will show that you go above and beyond to get your tasks accomplished. In addition, taking that extra 15 minutes to make your email personal will go a long way to show the hiring manager that you truly want the job.

Filed in Career Development, Weekly Reading

November 4th, 2014

Voce Student Weekly Reading 11/4: Career Fair Tips, Press Release Mistakes to Avoid & More

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Social Media

What’s the Best Way to Spend 30 Minutes of Your Time on Social Media Marketing?

“Social media management can be a full-time job, and even for those who do social along with any number of other tasks, social media marketing can still take 10 or more hours every week. So what would you do if you only had 30 minutes to spend on social media?”

Insight – Schedule your emails, tweets, status updates and blog posts at the right time – when you have a captive audience. You want to catch your audience not only when they’re checking their messages and news feed, but when they might have a few minutes to click through a link and check something out. This article does an excellent job at highlighting how to manage your social media time and get what you need done in 30 minutes.

5 Tips for Writing the Perfect Social Media Post

“Don’t overwhelm your audience with too much text in a single post. Twitter has a character limit for a reason, and it’s good practice to place your own limitations on all your social media posts. Try to keep your non-tweet posts around 250 characters. Not only does this help to keep the interest of your readers, it makes sure none of your text gets cut off.”

Voce Insight- The key to a great social media post is great content. If you don’t have anything valuable to give your audience, it’s not worth posting something just because you feel you have to keep with a schedule. However, that’s not to say that posting consistency isn’t important. Use trial and testing to determine what posting frequency your audience responds to best.

Public Relations

PR Insider: Top 7 Myths in Public Relations

“Public relations can be a simple industry for many who choose to consider it as such: You get a client, call the media, tell their story, go home. At least, that’s the going thought out there.”

Voce Insight – Working to dispel the myth that PR people don’t understand media will help you tremendously to become successful. Research the current media landscape. Seek to understand the pressures of being a reporter today and how you can help them. Write to them with news that would interest their readers and building a rapport with the core media for your client will be much easier.

5 Press Release Mistakes PR Pros Should Avoid

“You can’t just assume the reporter will understand why your news is so significant, because it may not necessarily fall under his or her main area of coverage. You need to make it clear not just what the news is, but also why it’s important and needs to be covered.”

Voce Insight- Unless you immediately command their attention, most reporters are not going to read farther than the headline and the first few sentences. Your opening should be able to stand on its own, clearly conveying the news and why it’s important. Writing in the inverted pyramid style, with the most important information up top will help reporters (and ultimately yourself) a great deal.

Career

9 Career Fair Tips to Get You Hired

“Career fairs are a great place to network and build strong relationships within your future industry. Talk with as many people as you can at a career fair, advises John Bradac, director of career services at Ithaca College in New York. “Even if a company does not offer what you are looking for, you never know who that company representative may know. You may be pleasantly surprised as to who knows whom and where someone may be able to refer you.”

Voce Insight – Career fairs are an excellent way to build your professional network and find out about internships and job opportunities. This is your time to shine, so make sure to put your best foot forward. Dress professionally, and practice your “elevator speech” so you come across confident, not nervous.

5 Ways to Get Noticed in the Workplace

“In today’s world, it’s difficult to stand out and make a name for yourself. We did it…we put ourselves out there, went on interviews, landed the job, and finally have our foot in the door. The question then becomes, what now?”

Voce Insight – You may be the hardest worker at your company – but if you’re not in people’s thoughts, then you will be passed up for any new projects, promotions or additional responsibilities. Even though it may seem tough at first, try and solve problems on your own, without seeking help every step of the way. This will show that you are capable of working independently and effectively. Like this article mentions, “don’t be afraid to take matters into your own hands!”

Filed in Career Development, Weekly Reading

October 28th, 2014

Voce Student Weekly Reading 10/28: Why Social Media is Mandatory for Success, Tips to Stand Out and Get Your Dream Job & More

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Social Media

Infographic: The Optimal Length for Every Social Media Update and More

“Shorter seems to be better on Facebook. Maximum engagement happens at 40 characters (so, too, does minimum quantity, meaning that a vast minority of Facebook posts hit this 40-character mark). And engagement slowly wanes the longer you go.”

Voce Insight – While social media is all about trials and testing, this fun infographic is very useful when you’re first starting out with a social media program or campaign. You can use the tips in this infographic as a great jumping off point, and then tweak depending on the results that you see on your social media channels.

Public Relations

The Keys to a Compelling Headline

“First, to create a compelling headline, look at the project with a creative eye. Think about it from the perspective of a reader and try to imagine what would grab them, draw them in, and make them curious to want to not only read more, but share the piece with their social communities.”

Voce Insight – In a world full of noise, how do you get people to actually read what you write? Good content or great design is just not good enough. The most important part of writing an article is the headline. Headlines contain essential words that convey the subject of a story and what the story is about. In addition to being unique, your headline should be ultra-specific. It should provide enough information to let customers know whether or not the offer you’re presenting is interesting to them.

The Five Parts to Brand Storytelling Nearly Everyone Misses

“‘No child will ever ask you to read them a press release at bedtime.’ You don’t say? His point was the corporate story you tell has to be engaging. If a child doesn’t want to watch, listen to, or read your story, neither will your customer. It means you’re doing it wrong.”

Voce Insight – Casting your client or company in the protagonist role of a bedtime-style story is a good way to check yourself and make sure whatever you’re writing is not too full of corporate-speak and jargon. It doesn’t need to have dragons and castles, but your story should still charm consumers into identifying and hopefully interacting with your client.

Career

How to Pitch Yourself and Improve Your Job Prospects

“One of the biggest mistakes that job seekers make is that they fire off their CV to whichever job site or recruitment company they saw the position posted on, and just leave it at that. Sure, your application might be so great that you get the call anyway, but showing some initiative can really increase your chances.”

Voce Insight – Engaging with professionals through social platforms can play an important role in landing you a job. LinkedIn and Twitter are both great places to get your name seen by people you hope to work with one day. Also, don’t be discouraged if someone doesn’t respond to you. If the person wants to get back to you, he or she will. It is much better to say “If this is not of interest, feel no need to get back to me.” LinkedIn groups hold a lot of opportunity for networking with people who fit your prospect profile as well.

5 Bold Ways to Stand Out and Land Your Dream Job

“Want to work in film production? Make your own short films and upload them to YouTube. Want to secure a job as a web designer? Find a friend with an independent business and create or revamp their webpage, but be sure to include a link to your contact details so people who like your work know how to find you. Think that project management is right for you? Start your own small scale project and put together a small team to get it running.”

Voce Insight – Showing your prospective employer that you’ve not only been keeping busy while looking for work, but that you’ve already been accruing relevant experience will help enormously. Work on related side projects while searching to demonstrate interest in your future career and initiative to your new boss.

Filed in Career Development, Weekly Reading

October 21st, 2014

Voce Student Weekly Reading 10/21: Steps to Prepare for Your Career While in College, How to Get a PR Internship & More

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Social Media

98,000 Hacked Snapchat Photos and Videos Posted Online

“On Sunday, a collection of almost 98,000 files (totaling more than 13GB of photos and videos), apparently from Snapchat users, were posted to The Pirate Bay less than 24 hours after someone claiming to be perpetrator said he had changed his mind and decided not to publish the photos.”

Voce Insight- The fleeting nature of Snapchat may suggest that files disappear along with the images or videos they contain. This goes to show that any data put out on the web can find its way into the wrong hands. Just remember to think twice before snapping something you may not want to resurface.

All Your Social Media Posts Now Sorted By Location and Up for Sale

“Using keyword and username filters, Geofeedia’s software collects your posts, tags them, and then groups them based on your geographical location, no matter what state or country you live in. And yes, this includes your username. This means that the cops — or more terrifying, your boss — can see what you’ve posted every time you hit send.”

Voce Insight- Geofeedia’s software is just another way companies can use what you post on social media to learn more about your habits. If privacy is a concern, make sure to turn off location information on Facebook, Instagram etc. Furthermore, PR and social media firms can use Geofeedia’s services to determine sentiment around a certain business, location, etc., and use it to provide recommendations to clients.

Public Relations

How to Get a Public Relations Internship

“Since writing is a major area of the public relations field, an error-free resume is crucial for gaining an internship. Networking online is another excellent strategy for staying up to date on internship opportunities and for companies to review your electronic qualifications in the event they are actively recruiting for such positions.”

Voce Insight – Did you grow up dreaming of representing brands, loving the media and writing? If so, chances are you are cut out to be a PR practitioner. However, landing an internship in this field can be far from dreamy. For starters, have a list of PR firms that you’re interested in. Now that you have a list of your target firms, your focus is narrowed and it’s time to network! If it wasn’t already, LinkedIn is now your best friend. Always follow up with personalized emails. Thank the people you met with for their time, and show your continued interest after knowing more about the job.

PR Insider: 5 Tips for Giving a Great Interview

“Landing great media coverage for your client or company is a key goal for most PR professionals. Most feature-type articles start with an interview, and there are a few telltale signs of a good one: the spokesperson represents his or her company well, starts to build a relationship with the reporter, entices the reporter to write an article now or down the road, and overall feels good about the conversation.”

Voce Insight- Make sure to prime the reporter beforehand with an overview of your client company, along with its products and services will help keep the conversation on track and make sure that both parties get what they need out of the interview. This also gives you an opportunity to establish a rapport, which could make the discussion more natural and free-flowing, rather than a stilted and simple Q&A.

Career

Six Steps to Prepare for Your Career While in College

“If you know what you want to do when you obtain your college degree, do you know people that are doing that job right now? If not, you should find out who these people are and speak with them. These individuals can be school alumni, friends of your family, parents of other students and people who live in the town where your college is located. Set up appointments with these individuals to learn about their jobs. These people can also prove good sources for possible job openings.”

Voce Insight – Most students are probably vaguely aware that their college or university offers career assistance, but it pays to research exactly what resources are available. You can help prepare for your career by taking on select extracurricular activities. These activities go beyond part-time work to provide hands-on experience related to your career aspirations. Your best way of getting prepared to enter the workforce is by securing an internship. That internship should align closely with what you want to do. Take your internship as soon as it becomes available.

High-Mobility Employees Are More Engaged With Social Media [Infographic]

“High-mobility employees are much more engaged with social media: 26% of high-mobility employees keep their LinkedIn profile up-to-date, whereas just 5% of low-mobility workers keep their LinkedIn profile current.”

Voce Insight- Beyond keeping their LinkedIn profiles up-to-date, high-mobility workers know that they could already be connected digitally to the next step in their work life. If you’re looking for the next foothold in the career climb at your company or searching for the next job, an online presence is imperative. Follow your prospective employers online and always make sure to follow up with those you meet in person by establishing a connection digitally.

Filed in Career Development, Weekly Reading

October 14th, 2014

Voce Student Weekly Reading 10/14: How to Avoid Social Media Regret, Crafting a PR Resume & More

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Social Media

Report: Facebook Readying App for Anonymous Sharing

“According to the report, the app will launch in the coming weeks and allow people to use pseudonyms so they can have discussions about topics which they may not be comfortable connecting to their real names.”

Voce Insight – This is a sharp departure from Facebook’s previous stance on anonymity – that attaching your real name to everything you share is important to establish a genuine online identity. It is true however that anonymity can foster positive discussion and sharing that might not happen if names were attached. Conversely, trolling and vitriolic comments are also a regular feature of sites that allow pseudonyms. Above all, remember that no matter what name you are sharing under, it’s not all that hard for a message to be traced back to its source.

How to Avoid Social Media Regret

“Social media is becoming an extension of the workplace,” says Janet Ayyad Ismail, a labor and employment attorney for the Dallas law firm Haynes and Boone. “You have the right to go on social media and complain about your job, but you don’t have the right to say whatever you want and keep your job.”

Voce Insight- It’s a delicate balance on social media between wanting to express your personality and views, and keeping things “employer appropriate.” When you’re having a rough day at work, be mindful not to let your temper get the best of you and post negative things about your employer. At best, you’ll end up regretting what you posted, and at worst, your employer may take action against you, whether that be a formal warning or even potentially letting you go.

Public Relations

Follow Up Right with Journalists: 5 Golden Rules

“When you follow up, tweak your pitch so that you offer something better than the first time you sent it, perhaps an exclusive with the company president, or new statistics that have popped up since your first pitch. This could be the thing that draws in the journalist or blogger.”

Voce Insight- You won’t get anywhere with a journalist by being annoying. Nothing is more aggravating to a journalist, or really any professional, than having your inbox blown up with an overenthusiastic pitch. If a journalist is interested, they will follow up with you. If they don’t, it’s reasonable to reach out a second time, but don’t keep emailing and calling if you don’t receive a response.

Putting together a Public Relations Resume that will Guarantee Landing a Job

“For starters, you must list your agency experience. Recruiters and hiring managers want to take a look at your resume and automatically see what Public Relations agencies you worked at. They’re looking for specific names here, so make sure to list them.”

Voce Insight – A lot of people can say they’re PR savvy, but not all those people can prove it. The PR practitioner reading your resume wants to see what you’ve accomplished for clients or brands. To really set you apart, show your fluency by linking to your blog, your Twitter handle, your LinkedIn page and your Pinterest account. Think of your objective as an elevator speech. Give a clear and concise statement of who you are, what you can do and how valuable you can be to the company that hires you.

10 Storytelling Tips for PR Pros

“Over the past decade, the field of public relations has evolved into a real-time, fast-paced practice. Yet, even within this evolution, the effectiveness of telling an organization’s story has remained a steadfast rock.”

Voce Insight – Perhaps more than anything else, strong writing skills and a sense for storytelling are paramount for any PR practitioner. Keep in mind that more people than ever have the ability to share your story. Moreover, having other people share your story for you lends it more credibility. Creating something that is simple, short and easily relatable will help in spreading your message.

Career

What You Need To Know About The ‘Stress Interview’ Or ‘Pressure Interview’

“Having to go through an interview is cause for enough anxiety for some people, but add to that a “stress interview” or “pressure interview” and the mind may blow. However, if you understand the strategy behind these types of interviews, you will know how to navigate through it successfully.”

Voce Insight – Stress interviews aren’t perpetrated exclusively to torture an interviewee. This approach is a legitimate and effective way to predict a candidate’s performance at work – which is, after all, pretty stressful at times. The candidate who handles interview pressure with confidence and grace goes light-years past the candidate who can handle only the easy questions. What’s the best thing you can do? Be open, honest and direct, but refuse to be emotionally intimidated.

Creating Your Personal Brand Online

“Every post you make on social media builds your online identity, which is an extension of your real identity. Without intentionally doing so, you are creating your own personal brand. Look back on your online activities. Have you been cultivating a good identity? Does it reflect your actual personality and does it show you in your best light?“

Voce Insight – Most people (including employers!) are going to do a quick Google search to get acquainted with you before you actually meet. Whatever they encounter online in those first couple minutes will color how they interact with you in person. Googling yourself may sound a bit conceited, but its also a good idea to cultivate the online presence you think best represents you.

Filed in Career Development, Weekly Reading

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