Blessed People Bless People at the Notre Dame School

By Virginia Brooks, Founder and Principal A lot of people in Dallas were blessed last week – and from a most unexpected source. More than 100 students from Notre Dame School, Dallas’ only independent school specifically designed to meet the needs of students with intellectual disabilities, fanned out across the Metroplex in a day devoted to service to others.  Celebrating their school’s 50th anniversary Golden Jubilee, these boys and girls — sporting tee shirts that proudly proclaim “No limits. Just Possibilities.” — pitched in to pack food boxes for the needy, sort shoes and clothes for ministries to the poor, decorate birthday cards for the elderly, and assemble surgical soap kits and hospital admission packets.  Another 50 students stayed at the school to prepare hygiene packs for the homeless. They traveled in buses to seven locations, blessing the staffs,...

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Will Public Relations Become Branded Journalism?

More and more we are writing news. Does that make us a new type of journalist? By: Robyn Brown There’s been talk recently in public relations circles about our industry becoming a form of branded journalism. And it got me thinking: What is branded journalism? And that sounds like something I do already. We all know that the size of newsrooms has been shrinking, that media powerhouses are forced to evolve in the digital age and that younger generations have less trust in traditional media. With fewer media to call upon to report our news, wouldn’t it be easier to become the media? Instead of packaging the story for someone else and hoping they get it right, why not just tell the story ourselves? What a radical notion! But we are moving quickly into this role – from corporate blogs to...

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Three Corporate Words that Drive Me Bonkers

By Robyn Brown, Account Executive There are certain corporate words that just make my skin crawl. Some are corporate-speak and won’t be found in Webster’s dictionary. Others are used so much they start to lose their original meaning. Here’s my top three: Targeted as in targeted communications, targeted media list or targeted messaging. I am very guilty of this one. It’s a good example of including unnecessary filler words. Targeted is redundant, as if we’re saying the media list isn’t normally reaching a specific audience. Of course it is! Don’t use that word unless you want people thinking your communication is not always targeted. Drive as in “we will drive results from our PR campaign.” I laugh when I read this word. Several years ago, I sat in a client brainstorming meeting listening to overwhelming excitement for a campaign based on the word drive.  One participant, representing the branding team,...

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Building Brand Evangelism from the Inside

By Robyn Brown, Account Executive Do you realize some of your biggest cheerleaders can come from inside your company? According to a 2012 survey by the Society of Human Resource Management (SHRM), 81% of U.S. employees reported overall satisfaction with their current job, with 38% of employees indicating they were “very satisfied.” Most people will agree: It’s great to be with a company you’re proud to work for. You know the feeling – You enjoy telling friends and family about your work. You’re excited to get to the office each day. You’ll tweet the company’s new product release even when you’re not in PR. The one-third of “very satisfied” employees in your organization are ideally suited to serve as brand ambassadors, helping to promote the company’s message beyond marketing and PR efforts. Marketing and PR teams should support brand ambassadors within...

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Stop SOPA

By Robyn Brown, Account Executive Imagine a world without Google, You Tube, WordPress or Wikipedia. No blogging, easy research tools or online entertainment. Businesses could fail. Teachers would be limited on their resources. Free speech wouldn’t exist. Life would get harder for those of us who spend plenty of time using the Internet daily. Well, this is SOPA and PIPA. The Stop Online Piracy Act (SOPA) and Protect IP Act (PIPA) draw in much criticism from Americans claiming these laws violate “free and open Internet.” If passed by Congress, these laws could shut down websites without a court hearing, make patrons vulnerable to Internet hacking, deplete our free speech, and overall damage businesses (even non-profits). This type of censorship is practiced in China, Iran and Syria. Check out AmericanCensorship.com for graphics on the “Internet Blacklist Bill.” Websites such as Google, Wikipedia...

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