All posts by Kate Ottavio

Twitter is one big, fat inside joke between 100 million people

Golfers laughingIf you don’t get this post, then you don’t spend enough time on Twitter. I however, have spent too much of my time on Twitter since I joined in March 2009…and for that I lead a sad, sad life. #kidding

Ok, so we’ve all had the “why are you on Twitter?” discussions with friends and family who are not on Twitter. “What’s the point?” Or my favorite from my boyfriend as we’re in his car: I’m giggling looking at my BlackBerry screen and he says “what’s going on in the Twitterverse?” How did he know I was on UberTwitter and not that someone just sent me a funny text or e-mail? Easy answer: he knows me. Continue reading

The PR Fairytale

Woman sitting with child on lap, reading storybookThere once was a young maiden named Enchantra. She was a beautiful young lady with fair skin and high hopes.

Enchantra’s life was perfect. She lived atop a beautiful castle, had an adoring prince charming to keep her company and she had a cute wardrobe to boot!

The best part of Enchantra’s life however, was her job. She was a PR professional working in the King’s office as chief director of public affairs. With a college degree and years of experience, Enchantra was highly appreciated and doted on in her work life. How could she not be? Take a look at her recap of the last week’s activities: Continue reading

Are you really giving thought to starting a blog?

Writing QuillDue to work commitments, general life obligations and competing for the title of Miss CT, I disappeared from the PRBC blog for an extended period of time. Trust me that this was neither intentional nor planned. I’ve always been committed and punctual with my blog posts for this site . . . but things just got away from me.

After “getting back in the groove” and helping a business-owner friend of mine set up his own blog, the thought popped into my head: “how many people actually give serious thought to this blogging thing and how many just hop right in because it’s the coolest thing since Air Jordan’s?” Seriously, I’m commitment-phobe and I said “yes, I’d like to join these ten PR colleagues in starting and maintaining a blog!?” Who am I? Continue reading

Back to Square One

Mortarboard and DiplomaCongratulations to the graduating class of 2010! You made it through four years of college and you’ve achieved freedom (for the most part). As the majority of you look for and find your first professional job, I wish you all the best. But I also want to bestow some knowledge that I wish someone would have shared with me.

I was fortunate to be hired at a small PR firm in an account coordinator position three months after college graduation. I had three internships on my resume, a number of accolades, leadership roles and graduated magna cum laude. I was (what I thought) “on top.” Unstoppable. Valuable. Ready to take on the world. Continue reading

Not “just a PR professional”

Stacked pilesof cowboy hatsWe all wear multiple hats as PR professionals. Thinking about adding some new “roles” to your resume to show off your experience? Here are some to consider (and to be taken lightly):

  • Therapist

Hand-holding just comes with the territory. Whether it be calming a client down about a less-than-glowing article written about his or her company, or consoling a stressed out co-worker, we give our fair share of “therapy.” I joke that I should have double majored in PR and psychology.

  • Janitor

We clean up the mess. When things go awry and no one can keep it together, PR professionals are there to clean up after whatever has gone wrong. Continue reading

PRos Anonymous – Our Innermost Thoughts

Embarrassed BusinessmanI recently went to an event with a friend who doesn’t work in PR. How odd (sarcasm) I ran into a number of my fellow PR practitioner friends. What dominated the next hour of our conversation in this group? Starts with a ‘P’ and ends in an ‘R.’ Take a wild guess.

My friend, to very little surprise, was exhausted by “oh my gosh, and then she tweeted this!” and “oh, that editor doesn’t like me very much because my client cancelled their event last-minute.” Admit it; we can be a tiresome crew.

So I thought: Why don’t we make a PRos Anonymous? For those who talk too much about their jobs as public relations professionals and are just generally obsessed. Continue reading

Wha!? PR people who don’t answer the phone??

memo with urgent messageWe’ve all heard of the “good karma” e-mail. “Hi. This is So-And-So and I see you’ve recently been writing on topics X, Y and Z. I have clients in a number of related areas who might be able to serve as a source for you. Please let me know if I can ever be of any help…”

I love good karma e-mails. No pitching. No berating. Just an “I’m here to help.”

My co-workers and I like to take this to a new level. We are huge believers in helping journalists even when we hand them an expert who is not our client. We hold our relationships with journalists in very high regard. Continue reading

Bring on the money! Working for free…

Thinkstock Single Image SetOk, so I’ll admit it . . . I wrote this post a while back called “Give it Away . . . For Free!” sharing how free advice will ultimately pay off and bring good karma. And yes, I still stand by everything I wrote. But perhaps I’m seeing business bottom line with more of an ice cold eye than I once did.

On an episode of Kell on Earth, Kelly Cutrone struggles with people constantly asking for free advice, actually taking a cell phone call from the uncle of her daughter’s school friend. He inquired about his own business (whatever it was) and asked what he should be doing. But, Cutrone owns her own business (People’s Revolution) and she has to worry about paying her employees and getting food on the table for her seven year old daughter (oh, and paying for her country house in France…technicality). Constantly dolling out free advice sets her back in her day taking away valuable time from her paying clients. Continue reading

Gosh, no! It’s not about the numbers!

Close-up of a rolled up Indian one hundred rupee banknote on a chessboard with chess piecesI’m talking about Twitter here, people. Your follower count does matter. Admit it – it’s addicting and you want more.

In a recent post by Mack Collier titled “The fast food approach to social media,” he stated:

Getting 5,000 fans on a Facebook fan page is NOT a social media strategy. Getting 200 followers on Twitter is NOT a social media strategy. Facebook and Twitter are tactics used to execute a social media strategy, getting on Facebook and Twitter is not a social media strategy.

Mack worries that a shady agency or consultant will take any willing candidate who just wants a lot of followers and wants them now and that many assume follower and friend counts on Twitter and Facebook are the metrics to determine a successful social media strategy. Continue reading