A couple weeks ago I had the chance to take part in a webinar hosted by Sprout Social. Below are the best insights I collected from the event.
We Are Communication Architects
Building brand awareness through content creation and community engagement.
Chris ThilkMay 9th, 2016
It’s that time of year again, when a fresh group of young adults will be wrestled from the safety and comfort of college life and expelled out into the vast nothingness that’s known colloquially as “the real world.” It’s scary for anyone and recent research shows that for the group of young people known as Millennials it’s even worse, as they’re rightfully pessimistic about their job prospects.
One of the most common experiences post-college is finding out that all those classes and courses didn’t completely prepare you for what a job was going to entail. That’s been something we’ve talked to Vocians about in our ongoing Voce Voices series and it’s what we’re going to cover here over the course of May as we talk to people within and without of Voce about what it was they wish they’d known before they were shuffled off campus and into the workforce.
So what was my story? I’m glad you asked.
My usual line when someone asks about my college experience I respond with something along the lines of “Nothing I do now existed when I was in school.” That’s true to a certain extent. I finished college in 1998, before blogs were a thing, much less social networks like Twitter and Facebook. When I wanted to watch the first teaser for Star Wars: Episode I it was via dial-up and played as an embedded Quicktime file that I’m still waiting to finish loading. Web publishing, unless you were Dave Weiner, was still the sole purview of major media companies and the first online retailers.
But the principles of communication were the same: Say what you need to say in as efficient and compelling manner as you possibly can. Everything I’ve done since then in terms of content strategy, online marketing and social media has been built on that. So while I wish I’d known what the future of the internet was going to hold and been able to anticipate the needs of content creation and distribution, I’ve been able to pull on the basics of what I learned to inform how I approach all that.
That’s my perspective. Watch out for more from around the Voce Nation as May goes on and leave a comment below with your thoughts.
Voce NationMay 6th, 2016
Every week the Voce team works tirelessly to secure important coverage for clients. Below is just an example of the results of this week’s work and you can see more on Flipboard.
Fortune’s Most Powerful Women Insider community featured a contributed article from Leighanne Levensaler where she answers the question, “how important is it to know where you want to be in five years?”
Michael Krigsman writes about why Aneel and Dave Duffield started the company, how Workday prioritizes customer feedback and the CIO role in today’s changing environment.
AnandTech, The SanDisk X400 1TB SSD Review
Billy Tallis reviews the SanDisk X400 SSD – providing in-depth details on the high quality and speedy performance of the drive.
Yahoo! Tech, The 11 Best Tech Gifts for Mother’s Day 2016
Tile is featured in a roundup of gifts for Mother’s Day, an important sales day for the brand.
Ryan O’Leary, VP at WhiteHat Security explains new security requirements in the payment industry.
CNN Money, These skills will get you a job
LinkedIn Economic Graph skills data is used as a reference in this story about desirable skill sets in the US economy.
CIO.com, 10 tips to help CIOs reduce stress
Geoff Webb, VP at Micro Focus shares tips to help CIOs manage stress.
Tile’s new partnership with Jaguar Land Rover is featured, including an interview with CEO and co-founder Mike Farley.
Palo Alto Networks / BLUECAT (among others)
Palo Alto Networks
Want to find out more about Voce and what it can do for you? Visit our Services page, then meet the Staff that makes all this magic happen. Finally, contact us today to learn more about Voce’s capabilities and operations.
Sean LenehanMay 3rd, 2016
There are quite a few parts to play in public relations, each with their own headwear. At Voce we wear all of them, often switching multiple times a day, like mid-act costume changes.
Brittany Dixon, Senior Client Executive, shares her thoughts on what she wish she knew when starting out, and gives us a look at a week in her roles on the NetApp and HGST teams in this week’s Voce Voices.
Andrew StoltzfusMay 2nd, 2016
Last week, we published the first in a two-part series highlighting tips, tricks, hacks and best practices from across Voce for keeping up with our news. Today, it’s time for Part 2.
After all, we’re in the business of communications, meaning it’s imperative for every single one of us to keep our fingers on the pulse of what’s happening. That means what’s happening in our industry, what’s changing in our client’s worlds, what key journalists are interested in and what broader business trends are coming that we can get our clients in front of.
But just how to do that is something we’ve each answered in our own way. Which makes it that much more interesting to get a sneak peek into how various Vocians have approached that question.
Below is the second batch of responses and tricks from folks across Voce, illustrating just how they’ve each gone about the task of keeping up with the news.
Stephanie Cohen, Senior Client Executive
Most of the time I keep up on news using Twitter. I like that it’s real time and constantly moving. I follow relevant technology and business news outlets and scan my feed once or twice a day (usually on my commute or lunch break). I also pay attention to the daily news digest that the Voce Security Practice puts together and sends around twice a day in order to stay up to date on security-specific news that may be relevant to my clients.
Clint Gordy, Associate Client Executive
I do a morning report for a client each day, so I subscribe to dozens of newsletters. Fast Company, Fortune, The Wall Street Journal – you name it, and it’s routed to a specific folder on my email. Not only does this allow me see all breaking news in a cohesive location, but also helps identify emerging trends within the technology sector that I can present to clients.
Randy Ksar, Vice President
I have four key ways I keep up with my news: (1) Flipboard – I follow tons of tech influencers and have connected all of my social feeds. This is usually my first app I open unless I’m binge watching some superhero or comedy flick on Netflix. (2) Anchor.fm: New app I started using about 2 months ago. AP is publishing there as well as tech influencers. Surprisingly my regular news (US and Global) on Anchor comes from the USC Journalism school. (3) Blab.im: I tune into to a few video podcasts: Social Chef, Social Media Examiner and Marketing Live. All have awesome digital and social media news that matters to me and my clients. (4) Product Hunt: For the latest products that companies are using and for interesting podcasts that I would never have found on iTunes, ProductHunt is the one stop shop. They have a great mobile app and even better Live AMA’s with leading technology editors and entrepreneurs.
Ariel Rothbard, Client Executive
I’ve found that Twitter is a great source of real-time news — I follow several of the top business and tech outlets, as well as key journalists and influencers who are almost constantly sharing updates. I also stay up to date on new happenings by subscribing to daily e-newsletters such as Fortune’s Data Sheet and TechCrunch’s Top Stories of the Day. I’ll usually skim these for the top headlines and then click the links to read full articles for those that are most relevant to my client work.
Chris ThilkApril 29th, 2016
I had a chance to attend the TALK Influence event held by WOMMA at Google Chicago this morning. Here’s a Storify collection of the big takeaways from the speaker presentations and panels.
Ana GabrielApril 28th, 2016
As marketing and communications professionals, we are challenged to tell stories in a time where trends are constantly replaced and buzzwords disappear before they mature. With the pace of innovation disrupting what we learned yesterday and what we thought we knew today, our day-to-days can sometimes be overwhelming. Just when we thought we finally understood virtualization or big data, concepts like the Internet of Things emerge to add a new layer of complexity.
While this is what makes our profession so exciting, it can also be difficult to keep pace with the industry. If you’re like me, finding value in my daily tasks – no matter how small or mundane – helps me to stay productive and tackle the never-ending list of action items and firedrills that fill my days.
As we wrap up Stress Awareness Month, we reached out to several industry professionals outside of Voce to learn how they manage to achieve work/life balance, stay focused, and remain productive despite all of the madness we come across on a day-to-day basis.
Embrace the chaos
There’s a certain amount of uncertainty and unpredictability that is just part of the job. Embrace that. Know your boundaries and stay focused on activities that will drive results so work hard AND smart.
There is no way to get around the long hours. But you can control how you approach them. Plan your time so you can to focus your attention on the most important things not just the urgent or top email in your inbox. Share priorities by leaning on your team for help where it makes sense. And, wherever you can, delegate tasks that divert focus or take away from driving results.
It’s PR, not ER
Meghan Fintland, senior manager, corporate communications, NetApp
There is a popular saying in PR, “we are not saving lives, it’s PR not ER,” which I try to remember during stressful situations. In times like these, it helps to keep focused on the end goal of whatever is making you stressed and keep motivated by what success looks like.
I also try to have enough activity outside of work. It may sound contradictory, but the more commitments I have, the better I am both physically and mentally in handling stress. I currently serve on two non-profit boards and am actively involved in my son’s school. Not only does my volunteer work benefit my son, but it keeps me engaged, focused on helping others, and most importantly not solely focused on the stress of work.
30 minutes of solitude
Richard Brewer-Hay, director, social media, Splunk
One of the things that keeps me sane is my 30-minute commute on the bus with my headphones. I either listen to a podcast or a playlist I’ve created on Spotify when I just want to zone out on the bus. As a social media professional, I’m always listening to someone either online or in person, so there are times when I need a little bit of time to myself. (What’s RBH listening to these days? Click here to find out.)
Andrew StoltzfusApril 25th, 2016
We’re in the business of communications, meaning it’s imperative for every single one of us to keep our fingers on the pulse of what’s happening. That means what’s happening in our industry, what’s changing in our client’s worlds, what key journalists are interested in, and what broader business trends are coming that we can get our clients in front of.
But just how to keep up with all of that can be a tough challenge – especially on top of everything else we have to do in a day.
That’s why we asked a group of folks across Voce for their tricks, tips, hacks and best practices for keeping up with their news. Unsurprisingly, we got such a range of responses and tricks that we had to turn it into two parts.
This is the first of a two-part series highlighting a selection of these approaches:
Keira Anderson, Vice President
Each morning, I start my day with a quick scan of top stories from the Fortune, WSJ, New York Times and Re/code newsletters. All of the most important headlines are curated right there for you — and more and more, these publications are sharing articles from across publications. It’s an easy way to capture the important news for my clients on the way to work. I also religiously read Sam Whitmore’s Media Survey emails since they always have the best inside scoop on the top journalists. When it comes to client coverage tracking, it’s all about #GoogleRefresh to make sure we’re staying on top of the news cycles.
Sean Lenehan, Senior Client Executive
I subscribe the to the New York Times, keep their website as my home page and enable their push notifications on my phone. That’s supplemented by following a cadre of tech, business and political reporters on Twitter. And though I don’t go there for news, I’ll occasionally learn of stories through Reddit or Facebook.
Ed McClendon, Supervisor
Bye bye newspapers, hello Twitter Moments. Last October, my FOMO (Fear of Missing Out) tendencies rejoiced when the social platform announced their new (life changing) feature. All it takes is a click and a few swipes on my mobile device and voilà, I’m up to speed on all of the latest topics that are dominating online conversations. Looking to consume news with a laugh? Yes? Then I highly recommend the “Links I would gchat you if we were friends” daily newsletter, that is produced by The Washington Post’s digital culture critic, Caitlin Dewey.
Lisa Neitzel, Senior Vice President
I read theSkimm daily newsletter every morning before I even get out bed to see a quick overview of the news I need to know. Then, as I go through the day, I check in at a number of news sites online to track real-time breaking news. Finally, to take a step back and look at bigger trends and features, I read Time Magazine each weekend.
Randy KsarApril 22nd, 2016
This week on the Voce Nation Podcast I’m joined by Chris Thilk and Erik Sebellin-Ross as we talk about everything from how we found out about Prince passing away to what our favorite podcasts are.
Here’s what we discussed this week:
- Erik shares some best practices for brands to engage on Reddit in the wake of this story on Social Media Today.
- What are our favorite podcasts? Randy likes StartUp and the deep dives it does on a kind of app or network. Erik recommends Hardcore History and the details it offers on historical events. And Chris gives a shout-out to You Must Remember This, a long-form exploration of Hollywood’s Golden Age.
- Randy shares some insights on Sprout Social’s new Facebook Reactions analysis offering and talks about how it can help content publishing efforts.
- Lots of good stuff on Voce Nation, including this look at how various Vocians are involved in charities and other organizations as they give back to their communities.
Catch up with Voce on Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn and Soundcloud. And follow me and Thilk on Twitter for more. Finally, find out about the PNConnect Weekly Reading newsletter and sign-up to get it via email directly.
Samantha ForthApril 20th, 2016
As folks graduate college and move into the “adult” work world, they may think that the learning process is over. But those people are wrong, so very wrong. Which is great, because life without learning is boring, right?
Alex Alias, Client Executive, shares job advice and gives us a look at a week in her roles on the SanDisk and NetApp teams in this edition of Voce Voices.