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Friday, February 26, 2010

Risdall Marketing Group Hires Elizabeth Mullen as Creative Director/Lead Designer

Risdall Marketing Group (RMG) announced that Elizabeth Mullen has joined the agency as creative director/lead designer. In this role, Mullen’s responsibilities will include concept development, art direction, design, production and project management for clients.

“ Elizabeth is a valuable addition to our team, and we know that she will infuse creativity into client projects right away,” said Lara Balai, co-president of creative for RMG. “She brings a unique perspective to our agency thanks to her background in the art world.”

Mullen worked for the past 12 years at the Minneapolis Institute of Arts as a graphic designer, where her projects included everything from designing exhibition-related materials to posters to brochures and more.

Prior to the Minneapolis Institute of Arts, Mullen worked as a freelance designer in Minneapolis . She started out her career at Leonard Wolfe Design Associates in Westport, Conn. Mullen also has worked for advertising firms in California as well as nutraceutical manufacturer Metagenics.

Mullen has a bachelor of fine arts degree from Arcadia University .

Weber Shandwick announces three new hires

Weber Shandwick today announced the hires of new employees in the health care; digital communications; and corporate, community and public affairs practices.

joined the health care practice as a senior account executive. Before joining Weber Shandwick, Backes worked for a San Francisco public relations firm as a senior account executive focusing on biotechnology and pharmaceutical accounts. A Cold Spring, Minn., native, she received a bachelor’s degree in communication studies from the University of St. Thomas.

joined the digital communications practice as a junior web developer. Prior to joining Weber Shandwick, he worked as a graphic and Web designer. A native of Chaska, Minn., Sullivan earned an associate degree in applied science in Web design and interactive media from the Art Institutes International Minnesota.

Upon completion of her internship, joined the corporate, community and public affairs practice as an assistant account executive. Prior to joining Weber Shandwick, Smolik worked as an intern at the Mall of America. A native of Mendota Heights, Minn., Smolik received a bachelor’s degree in political science and Spanish from the University of St. Thomas and a master of science in comparative politics from the London School of Economics, London, England.

Thursday, February 25, 2010

Job - Paid Internship at Ghost

Job - University of Minnesota - New Media Intern

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Employers Association - Social Media Conference: The Time is Now - March 18

I have been asked by the Employers Association to speak at the upcoming social media conference and would love for you to join me. Are you looking for ways your company can use social media to drive brand awareness and consumer/B2B traffic? Come to the Employers Association event on March 18 and find out.

Have you been asking yourself when and how to get onboard with social media? Where do we start? What should I know before my company jumps in? Who needs to "own" your company's involvement and content? How will you monitor feedback or measure ROI? What, if anything, should be asked of your employees already using Facebook, Twitter or LinkedIn? What are the legal considerations?
Big questions, indeed. yet, to sit on the sidelines now could have huge implications for your personal and business brand development and growth.

Facts: 50 million people were on LinkedIn in 2009. Another 175 million on Facebook and 18 million on Twitter. Potential or current customers? Candidates? Vendors? Clearly, the time to cultivate a clear social media vision, strategy and action plan is NOW!

Come learn the value and distinctions to be made as you decide what level of involvement is right for you and your business. This timely half-day conference will feature three distinct presentations from unique and hands-on subject matter experts.
Conference Presentations:

  • Employment law: What are the pitfalls and legal concerns with use of social media?
    • Presenter - Julie Holmes, Employers Association, HR Consultant
  • Marketing and Public Relations: How you and your company can use social media to drive brand awareness and consumer and B2B traffic
    • Presenter - Ryan May, Risdall McKinney Public Relations, Vice President
  • Recruiting and Workforce Retention: New tools for the looming "War for Talent"
    • Presenter - Paul DeBettignies, Recruiter, Blogger, Social Media Consultant

The time is NOW and it starts HERE!

Who should attend? Individuals who want to:

  • Better understand the types and functions of social media and networking; what are the different platforms and professional applications
  • Learn how to incorporate social networking and medial into your personal and organization's career development efforts
  • Learn how to take a systematic and thoughtful approach to advancing your understanding and use of social media and networking
  • Determine a strategy for using social networking and media for business
  • Understand the legal, policy and resource issues with effectively "managing" social media

This conference will be held at EA's Plymouth location.


Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Marketing Planning Boot Camp™

Monday, March 15, 2010, 8:00 AM — Tuesday, March 16, 2010, 12:00 PM

The ability to effectively develop the elements of a marketing plan is a critical success factor for marketing professionals, business managers, and entrepreneurs. AMA is proud to introduce—and the MN AMA is proud to host—the Marketing Planning Boot Camp™, a new professional development opportunity that will give you the foundation to create a dynamic marketing plan of your own. During the program you will work with peers in a small group setting under close supervision of an expert in marketing plan development. Each group will create a marketing plan for the case study company specified at the beginning of the session.

What You’ll Learn

1. Why a marketing plan must effectively fit in with the overall business planning process and how to ensure it does so
2. What constitutes an effective marketing plan
3. How to effectively create and apply a situation and competitor analysis; marketing objectives, action plans; market segmentation, target marketing, positioning, and marketing mix strategy approaches; and appropriate metrics to monitor plan success
4. How to articulate an executive report of the marketing plan orally and written

At the close of the Marketing Planning Boot Camp™ you will have a complete example of a marketing plan, along with resources that you can use as a process guide when you develop a marketing plan in your own work setting!

Who Should Attend
  • Persons who enjoy learning by doing
  • Individuals who have completed the basic AMA Marketing Boot CampTM
  • Marketing professionals, business managers, entrepreneurs with a solid understanding of marketing and who need to develop a marketing plan
  • Recent college graduates in marketing


Monday, March 15
8:00 am to 5:00 pm
Continental Breakfast, Lunch & Breaks provided

Overview of Marketing Planning
  • Situation analysis
  • Competitor analysis
  • Marketing objectives
  • Market segmentation-target marketing, positioning, and marketing mix approaches
  • Action plans
  • Plan metrics
Group Case Assignment

Tuesday, March 16
8:00 am to 12:00 noon
Continental Breakfast & Breaks provided

Group Work on Case Assignment
Team Presentations, Critique, and Discussion
Summary of Learning
Your Charge For The Future

Members $600
Nonmembers $860


University of St. Thomas

Minneapolis, MN

Monday, February 22, 2010

Job - Mall of America - Social Media Specialist

Friday, February 19, 2010

Job - 3 public affairs internship openings at Mayo Clinic #HAPPO

Job - St. Mary's Duluth Clinic Health System - Special Events/ Marketing & Communications Specialist #HAPPO

Thursday, February 18, 2010

5 Challenges facing young PR professionals: Where to start?

Throughout my time as a PR major at the University of Minnesota, I can assure you that I always had my eye on the prize—and I’m not talking about a diploma. As I began my final semesters as a full-time student, I began to think more and more about what came after graduation day. I wanted a job, but I had no idea how to start looking for one.

While I worked hard to maintain a solid GPA and gain experience through internships and PRSSA activities, I put even more effort into making meaningful connections with my teachers and PR professionals in the community. All throughout college I heard about the benefits of setting up informational interviews and attending networking events, but I had no idea where to start. It can be a very intimidating process, and unfortunately, there’s no guidebook for beginning conversations with a bunch of people who are experts in communications. Below are a few tips I was given along the way that I found particularly useful.
  • Listen to your professors. Many PR and advertising professors have worked in the field or currently work in the field. Pay attention to lectures, and take note of which agencies, corporations, or non-profit organizations they are connected to.
  • Talk to your professors. Stay after class and let them know that you were particularly interested in a story they told about a client or a social media example they shared. This opens the flow of communication, and will make you more comfortable talking with them and other professionals in the field.
  • Do your research. This part is kind of fun. Start by doing a Google search of PR agencies in your area and check out their Web sites to learn about each one’s philosophy, corporate culture, and client roster. Not only will this help you figure out where you might want to work, but the research will provide you with knowledge that will be useful during informational interviews or other more informal networking conversations.
  • Don’t be afraid to make a phone call. Once you feel comfortable talking with a teacher after class or reaching out to a PR professional via email, it’s time to make a phone call and set up an informational interview. This may seem awkward and terrifying at first, but you’ll learn quickly that in a world reliant on tweets and instant messages, good old-fashioned phone calls are greatly appreciated. Calling will allow you to create a more personal connection with someone in the PR world, and also gives you an opportunity to prove that you’re assertive and proactive.
  • Remember that they were in your shoes once. Anyone who works in this industry had to start somewhere, and most of the people I have talked with over the last couple years are more than happy to meet with and help students who are passionate about public relations.
recently graduated from the University of Minnesota and works public relations agency in the Twin Cities.

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Risdall Marketing Group Announces 14 New Clients in 2010

Risdall Marketing Group (RMG) has started 2010 off strong by adding 14 new and expanded client accounts in January and February. In 2009, RMG added 106 new or expanded client accounts.

“2009 shaped up to be a great year for the agency – we had 106 new and expanded accounts with lots of new clients carrying over into 2010,” said John Risdall , vice chairman and CEO of RMG. “With the new year comes a fresh start, and we’re already off to an excellent beginning.”
RMG’s new and expanded accounts include:
Visit for more information.

Nemer Fieger, Inc. named GMADA’s 2010 Twin Cities Auto Show PR agency of record

Nemer Fieger, Inc. has recently been named the GMADA’s 2010 Twin Cities Auto Show agency of record for public relations services.

Nemer Fieger will work to develop stories, interviews and key messages surrounding the Auto Show, which runs March 6-14, 2010, at the Minneapolis Convention Center.

“We are excited to be a part of the 2010 Twin Cities Auto Show,” says Nemer Fieger president J. Marie Fieger. “We work on many different events and happenings in the auto industry, and are thrilled to add the Auto Show to our client roster.”

Exponent PR announces the return of Lia Middlebrook as an associate

Middlebrook left Exponent PR in June 2009 to pursue an opportunity to teach English in Argentina, where she spent six months living in Buenos Aires volunteering at a primary school and studying Spanish. She returns to Exponent PR to work in the agency’s growing food and nutrition practice. Middlebrook’s clients will include the General Mills and North American Olive Oil Association (NAOOA) accounts.

In her previous role at the agency, Middlebrook spent two years working on the DuPont Crop Protection and Propane Education & Research Council (PERC) accounts, as well as assisted with Agency marketing and public relations.

“We are thrilled to welcome Lia back,” said Tom Lindell, managing director, Exponent PR. “Her enthusiasm, creativity and media relations expertise are a great asset to our food clients.”

ProAm Day Needs More Professional Supporters! Sign up now!

The -->2010 PRSA Pro-Am Day --> is quickly approaching – February 26, 2010

At this time, PRSA has many eager students who wish to shadow professionals for the day to learn more about the PR industry. Unfortunately, we do not have enough professionals to match them. In the past, we’ve addressed this issue by assigning two students to one professional, but we have received feedback from students who feel they don’t get as much out of the day as they would with a one-on-one arrangement. So, as we are still in need of a few additional professional participants to host students, the Pro-Am Day committee has extended the deadline for professional registration until Friday, February 19.

PRSA would like to accommodate all the students but we need you professional!

You can sign up to host a student by visiting


Minnesota PRSA has announced a new leadership roster for 2010. Minnesota PRSA is the 10th-largest chapter of the world’s leading organization for public relations professionals.

“Our newly appointed board of directors has a great deal of public relations experience to help lead our industry forward,” said Candee Wolf, APR, president of Minnesota PRSA. “Our chapter is dedicated to showing the value of strategic public relations in an ever-changing media landscape.”

Minnesota PRSA is comprised of more than 350 members who represent business and industry, counseling firms, independent practitioners, military, government, associations, hospitals, schools, professional services firms, education and nonprofit organizations.

The 2010 Minnesota PRSA executive committee includes:

President – Candee Wolf, APR
Candee Wolf is marketing and communications director for American Dental Partners (ADPI) and its local dental affiliates, including Metro Dentalcare. She oversees public relations, marketing and communications for more than 40 dental practices in Minnesota and provides strategic counsel to more than 27 ADPI dental groups in 18 states. Wolf has created and launched communications programs at UnitedHealth Group, North Memorial Health Care and Strother Communications Group. She received a bachelor’s degree in psychology and a master’s in communications. Wolf’s work over the years has garnered several Classics awards. She is an active Minnesota PRSA member, having served on the board of directors for four years and with the Classics committee for five years, two as co-chair.

Vice President– Brooke Worden, APR
Brooke Worden is a vice president in the financial services group at Weber Shandwick’s Minneapolis office. During her 10 years at the agency, she has delivered programs for many of the firm’s marquee financial services and government clients, including Prudential Retirement, Allianz Life, CIGNA Retirement, ING, the Business Roundtable/Pension Coalition, U.S. Treasury, U.S. Mint and the Internal Revenue Service. Currently, she leads the Weber Shandwick U.S. Census Bureau team nationwide. Brooke and her teams have received numerous awards at the Classics, as well as Bronze Anvils and a Silver Anvil. A member of Minnesota PRSA since 2000, Brooke served on the Classics committee from 2001-2003 and is a former co-chair of the professional development & networking committee. She earned her APR in 2005, was elected to the board of directors in 2006 and served as a Minnesota PRSA delegate to the PRSA National Assembly in 2008 and 2009. Prior to joining Weber Shandwick, Worden was a management consultant in the financial services industry practice group at Accenture and a reporter at Twin Cities Business.

Treasurer – Brant Skogrand, APR
Brant Skogrand is vice president at Risdall McKinney Public Relations (RMPR). Prior to joining RMPR, Skogrand worked as a senior media relations specialist at Thrivent Financial for Lutherans, a not-for-profit Fortune 500 financial services membership organization. He has provided media relations counsel, public relations planning, employee communications expertise and writing and editing skills to clients and companies for 16 years. Prior to Thrivent Financial, he worked for Thomson West, Tunheim Partners and The Musicland Group. He holds a master’s degree in business communication from the University of St. Thomas, and a bachelor’s degree in journalism from the University of Minnesota. He formerly was the professional adviser to the PRSSA chapter at the University of St. Thomas. He has served as secretary, director of communications and director of student relations on the board of directors as well as co-chair of the student relations committee.

Secretary – Arik C. Hanson, APR
Arik Hanson is principal of ACH Communications, a digital communications firm focused on serving as strategic thought partners to financial services, health care, not-for-profit and other organizations. Through integrated PR, communications and digital programs, Hanson has been able to create tight-knit communities, build strong brand awareness and drive thought leadership for organizations across the country. Hanson has played a lead role in many social projects and initiatives online – both locally and nationally and is a frequent speaker at local colleges, universities and industry events. Hanson has served on the Minnesota PRSA board of directors for the past three years, serving as board liaison to the programming & professional development committees.

Ethics Officer – David Kostik, APR
David Kostik is president of Kostik Associates Inc., a Minneapolis-based firm that provides public relations, fundraising and strategic planning counsel to a variety of nonprofit organizations. Kostik has extensive experience as a senior public relations professional in the private, public and not-for-profit sectors. His work has been honored locally and nationally by the Public Relations Society of America (PRSA). He has been a member of PRSA (and the Minnesota Chapter of PRSA) since 1975. He earned his accreditation in 1986. Kostik served as president of the Minnesota Chapter of PRSA in 1991. He joined the board as ethics officer in 2009 for a three-year term.

Immediate Past President – Janice Hennings, APR
Janice Hennings is communications director for the Minnesota Hospital Association where she is responsible for all external communication strategies and activities. Previously she was the senior public relations consultant at Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Minnesota, where she was the primary public relations contact for pharmacy, medical policy issues, provider reimbursement, E-visits/telemedicine and Blue Cross’s campus development in Eagan and on the Iron Range. Hennings is a member of the PRSA Health Academy. She also spent time in marketing for the YMCAs of Minneapolis and Saint Paul. Her experience includes government relations and fundraising. Hennings has been an active member of Minnesota PRSA for 18 years and has served on the professional development committee and on the Classics committee. She has also served as a volunteer board member for the Minnesota Valley YMCA and the Minnesota Music Academy.

The 2010 Minnesota PRSA board of directors includes:

Director – Melanie Boulay Becker, APR
Melanie Boulay Becker is the owner of Boulay Becker Communications. She has provided strategic public relations counsel to corporations, small businesses, nonprofits and academic institutions for more than 20 years. Her experience includes seven years at one of the nation’s leading public relations firms. Previously, she served as director of communications for the Masonic Cancer Center at the University of Minnesota. Becker has served on the Minnesota PRSA board in 2009 and has been a PRSA member since 1987. She has previously served Minnesota PRSA as a board member from 1998 to 1999 and as a committee co-chair for five years. She has received two Classics awards and a University of Minnesota Communicators Forum Gold Award for her work. Melanie has a bachelor’s degree in journalism and French from the University of Wisconsin-Madison.

Director – Tracy Carlson, APR
Tracy Carlson is a media relations supervisor at Padilla Speer Beardsley. Her successful media relations efforts have contributed to several campaign awards including: a National PRSA Silver Anvil, a National PRWeek award, Minnesota PRSA Classics Best of Show and several Minnesota PRSA Classics. Tracy received a bachelor’s degree in mass communications, summa cum laude, from St. Cloud State University. Previously, Carlson worked in the communications divisions of the Little Falls Convention and Visitors Bureau and the Boys & Girls Club of Central Minnesota. Tracy has served on the Minnesota PRSA board the past two years, and is board liaison for the communications committee. Previously, she was board liaison for the Classics committee, and the co-chair for the student relations committee for five years. Carlson also serves as secretary on the Helping Paws board of directors.

Director (two-year term) – Patricia Effenberger, APR
Patricia Effenberger is a member of the editorial board at the Pioneer Press, and also handles community relations for the company, with an emphasis on the paper’s literacy and education programs in the community. Over the years she also has handled corporate communications, including media and public relations and community partnerships. She is a graduate of the College of St. Catherine and a PRSA member since 2002. She received her Accreditation in Public Relations (APR) in 2003.

Director (one-year term) – Kelli Harms, APR
Kelli Harms is a public relations and marketing specialist at Winnebago Industries, Inc., a leading U.S. manufacturer of motor homes based in Forest City, Iowa. For the past 10 years, Harms has worked toward furthering Winnebago Industries’ well known brand reputation through media and community relations, product promotion and product placement in the TV and the film industries. Prior to joining Winnebago Industries, Harms also worked in the nonprofit and financial sectors, with special emphasis in writing, editing and promotion activities. She also serves on various community boards and brings public relations and marketing expertise to those organizations. Harms earned her master’s and bachelor’s degrees in communications/public relations from the University of Northern Iowa (UNI), Cedar Falls, Iowa. In 2009, she joined Minnesota PRSA’s board of directors as a liaison to the accreditation and JobMart committees.

Director (two-year term) – Leah Otto, APR
Leah Otto is an adjunct professor of mass communications at St. Cloud State University, and a consultant specializing in marketing and public relations strategy. Otto has served an array of small businesses and helped launch Minute Clinic. Otto’s roles have required her to wear many hats, including TV spot and interactive marketing production at Best Buy. Otto also helped create and launch the original award-winning “Peanuts on Parade” campaign in St. Paul. Otto holds a master’s of business communication and is accredited in public relations. She currently serves as co-chair of the Minnesota PRSA accreditation committee.

Director – Anna Lewicki Long, APR
Anna Lewicki Long is the communications director for the Minnesota Department of Veterans Affairs where she is responsible for all statewide public relations, marketing and advertising efforts. Long previously worked at Mall of America in the corporate PR department. She currently serves as a public affairs officer in the Minnesota Air National Guard and has conducted missions in Croatia, Bosnia, Central America, Norway and Germany. After 9/11 she spent six months as chief of media relations for First Air Force under NORAD. Over the course of her military career, her unit has received more than a dozen awards, including an Emmy in 2008, the Air Force award for photojournalism, two Bronze Quill awards and a Northern Lights award. Long has a background in journalism and holds a BA in mass communications and has completed the Department of Defense’s Public Affairs Officer Training program. Long helped launch the Alphabet Bash on behalf of PRSA and has co-chaired the PRSA programming committee. Anna has served on the Minnesota PRSA board since 2009.

The 2010 nominating committee includes Anna White Lovely, APR; Jan Hennings, APR; Candee Wolf, APR; Shireen Gandhi, APR; and Joel Swanson, APR.

A comprehensive leadership roster can be found on the Minnesota PRSA Web site ( under Minnesota PRSA/About Us.

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Remembering my friend - Jeff Van Keuren

The first time I met Jeff it was a freezing day in January 2002, I had a job interview at United Defense---now BAE Systems. I remember that I had a terrible cold that day, but despite my coughing I thought the interview went well. I was disappointed that I didn't get the job, but Jeff called me to assure me that he was recommending me for another position and that he would hang on to my resume.

I thought it was the typical thing you hear when you don't get a job "Yeah we will keep your resume on file (in the garbage) and call you in a few weeks," and of course that call usually never comes. In this case Jeff did hang on to my resume and they did call and I did get the job. Thanks to Jeff I had a wonderful career at BAE Systems for almost eight years.

Jeff taught me that it is important to treat people like people. I remember being at dinner in the U.S. Capitol with a number of different senators and representatives. I was overwhelmed by all the VIPs, but somehow Jeff still found time to come over and ask me how life was going.

We often joked with Jeff, because at the end of every meeting he would ask, "Okay, what's next." He always had his eye on the next big technology leap and he always wanted to be on the cutting edge. Last fall I had lunch with Jeff as he was recovering from his second brain tumor. We joked about our travels and the good times at BAE Systems, but more than work, Jeff wanted to hear about my adopted son Samuel and my daughter Lauren.

I was surprised to find him still driving and when I asked him about it he said, "Oh I've been driving my wife crazy for years." That was Jeff. He loved his wife Barb and adored his kids Beth and Ben.

When I got the word last week that Jeff had finally lost his fight to brain cancer, a small part of me was broken. I will miss joking with Jeff. I will miss his mentorship and encouragement to get my Accreditation in Public Relations. But most importantly, I will miss my friend.

Do you have a memory of Jeff that you want to share? I would love to hear it in the comments below or you can post it to West

Monday, February 15, 2010

Job - Mayo Clinic - Public Affairs Intern

Job - Wind on the Wires - Communications Manager

Friday, February 12, 2010

Job - Padilla Speer Beardsley - Vice President, Agribusiness

First Meet & Mingle of the New Year - Wednesday, March 9, 2010

You’re invited to Minnesota PRSA’s first Meet & Mingle of the New Year! Connect with social media enthusiasts, meet new industry peers and catch-up with old friends. It’s a great opportunity to expand your professional network in a casual atmosphere.

We’re also adding a little friendly competition into the mix. Social Media Breakfast Minneapolis/St. Paul (SMBMSP) and Minnesota PRSA join forces for a “PR/SM Trivia Challenge.” Teams combining both groups face-off in a PR and Social Media showdown. Bragging rights and a few fun prizes go to the smartest team in the house.

Time: 5:30-7:30 p.m.
Check-in and social: 5:30 p.m.
Trivia Endeavor Competition/Ice Breaker: 6 p.m.
Networking: 6:30-7:30 p.m.

Location: Loring Kitchen & Bar
1359 Willow St. S.

Directions: .

Appetizers included. Cash bar with happy hour specials.

Price: $10 (Price increases by $5 after March 7 and must be paid at the door.)

Registration: On-line at or contact the PRSA office at
before 5 p.m. on March 7. Registration limited to the first 125 registrants.

The Twitter hashtag is .

For more information about either participating organization, visit: or - Sponsored by Brio Books -

Thursday, February 11, 2010

Do you integrate PR with your marketing strategy?

Our industry is a buzz with phrases like:
  1. “Is PR dying?”
  2. “Who ‘owns’ social media - marketing or PR?”
  3. “Is PR limited to media relations?”
  4. “How does PR fit into the marketing mix?”
  5. “Is the concept of ‘integrated communications’ possible?"

While I’ve participated in dozens of these conversations online, touting that the answer to all of these questions comes back to strategy, my answers and comments always seemed to go in circles, lacking clarity and sometimes even leaving me (or those with whom I was chatting) with more questions than answers.

I hope that this post will not be one of those discussions. (And, I thank you for having enough faith, or skepticism, to keep reading.)

It became clearer to me in the past few weeks when working on a variety of proposals – some which were “marketing” proposals and others that were “public relations” proposals. When you bring social media tools into the communications strategy, the lines between “public relations” and “marketing” are increasingly blurred.

The point of distinction, however, becomes clear in the objectives. For instance:

  • Marketing Objective: Develop brand awareness and increase sales by 20%.
  • Public Relations Objective: Increase positive brand sentiment by 20%.

PR, as defined by James Grunig and Todd Hunt, is “the practice of managing the communication between an organization and its publics.” Those “publics” who once seemed reachable only through the print media they read, are now so much closer to us, thanks to social media tools.

When it comes to applying PR the social web, there are key points that differentiate PR plans from marketing plans:


Content. Marketing content and PR content is different, right? But in social media, you can’t always delineate the two. The right PR social media content strategy can help to drive sales (marketing) and spark media attention (PR).

Distribution. Just like a strategic pitch to the perfect reporter, the social media spaces in which messages are shared need to be strategically selected by researching where the key audience (brand influencers, media, content creators, end users) is hanging out, and what they are doing there.

Search. This is the new “earned media placement,” folks. All of your client’s online assets need to be optimized for traditional and social search, and carefully positioned within the client’s online communities and the media in an effort to spread information virally and organically.

Monitoring. Your client’s messages and stories will morph as they move across the social web. We can’t control the message anymore, but we must monitor and manage the reputation by: measuring conversations, establishing key performance indicators by which to measure objectives (which differ for each marketing and PR objective), conducting content analysis, and providing the best strategy for engagement – in both positive and negative situations.

And, that brings us back to strategy.

Marketing. PR. Advertising. Sales. Now, more than ever, these disciplines cannot operate in silos. “Integrated Communications*” is not only possible, it’s crucial.

Because the “public” is literally a keystroke away, “managing the communication between an organization and its publics” must guide the marketing strategy, the sales tactics, and the advertising campaigns.

A decent PR campaign, rooted in traditional media relations, can be executed on its own. A great PR campaign will work in harmony with each of these other disciplines and guide their success.

As PR practitioners, we may find that in addition to creating and executing the PR strategy, we're coming up with the marketing plan as well. The better our understanding of each of these disciplines, and the lines that blur the two, the stronger the PR industry will become.

What are your thoughts? Do you integrate PR with your marketing strategy? What are the obstacles, challenges, and benefits you’ve faced along the way? How is social media blurring the lines in your client offerings?

*For additional opportunity to engage in this discussion, join #IMCChat on Twitter with @bethharte and @abarcelos on Wednesday nights at 7 p.m. CST.

Kary Delaria is Vice President of PR and CLO (chief listening officer) at Kane Consulting, a social media marketing and PR firm that specializes in research, strategy, and measurement/monitoring in addition to producing events and providing training in these areas. You can contact her via email, or on Twitter.

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Agency Profile - Carmichael Lynch Spong

Founded in 1990, Carmichael Lynch Spong is the alternative to big, bland firms doing ordinary, off-the-shelf work.

From its Minneapolis headquarters, plus offices in New York, Boston, Denver and San Francisco, Carmichael Lynch Spong ignites and sustains momentum for a select but envied portfolio of blue-chip clients, including American Standard, Calphalon, Cargill, Harley-Davidson, Jack Link’s Beef Jerky, Noodles & Company, Sherwin-Williams and SUPERVALU to name a few. These clients are attracted to us for our unique way of igniting their business momentum through creative, best-in-category work.

Carmichael Lynch Spong provides full-service public relations counsel including brand marketing, corporate communications, public affairs, media relations, social media, employee engagement, community relations and leadership enhancement. We also collaborate with our sister advertising agency Carmichael Lynch to provide advertising and digital capabilities.

Over the past several years, Carmichael Lynch Spong has earned 57 Silver Anvils, 11 PRWeek awards and 38 Bronze Anvils from PRSA—our industry’s most coveted honors. Recently we were named “Small Agency of the Year” by The Holmes Report, a leading PR industry trade publication. This marks the third time in four years that the firm was recognized as an “Agency of the Year.” Previously, Carmichael Lynch Spong was named “Midsize Agency of the Year” by PRWeek in 2005, and by The Holmes Report in 2004.

“Every day I’m fortunate to be surrounded by our industry’s most talented, like-minded achievement addicts who are committed to performing their career-best work,” says Doug Spong, APR, president of Carmichael Lynch Spong. “Together we fight for some of the biggest brands in the world and have a ton of fun along the way.”

We take our work seriously, but not ourselves. Some of our most cherished events include our O’Gong Show on St. Patrick’s Day; our Halloween Costume Contest; a Roofgating event on our 17,000 square-foot rooftop to kick off summer hours; and the Gobble Off for Thanksgiving. We are also annually named a “Best Place to Work in PR” by the Minneapolis/St. Paul Business Journal, PR News and The Holmes Report.

We offer employees award-winning training and professional development programs to improve skills and assure individual growth. HeadRush™ is a “mind altering channel for professional development” that provides $2,500 per employee annually for professional dues, memberships, conferences and continuing education. Employees can also take advantage of our Summer Time Off program, which provides seven additional paid vacation days to be used during the summer months.

Carmichael Lynch Spong is the greenest agency in America, with a LEED-qualified work space, utilization of 100-percent wind-sourced power, recognition as an EPA Green Power Partner and the goal of zero landfill waste.

Carmichael Lynch Spong is owned by the Interpublic Group of Companies, Inc. (NYSE: IPG).

B2B Agency Schermer Kuehl Selects Creative Director

After an intensive search B2B marketing agency has hired to lead the organization’s traditional and digital creative endeavors.

Schermer Kuehl counts Best Buy for Business, United Hospital Services, Datacard and DataLink amongst its largest clients. Agency president Chris Schermer, anticipates an increased expectation by B2B brands for creative and strategic partnerships that deliver marketing programs that effectively connect traditional and digital elements.

Hoch is regarded for turning-out high profile multichannel campaigns, brand initiatives and digital experiences for companies including Best Buy, St. Jude Medical and Greatbatch Medical. His creative talents transcend traditional marketing and advertising mediums to include social media, augmented reality, mobile marketing and Microsoft Surface technology. Prior to Schermer Kuehl, Hoch served as creative director Modern Climate (formerly Wolfmotel).

“Phil is an exceptional fit for Schermer Kuehl, and our clients. He is impressive idea machine, who offers a superior level of multi-dimensional thinking.”

Since 1996, Schermer Kuehl has provided B2B companies branding services, product launches and campaigns addressing customer issues and new initiatives. The agency’s capabilities span brand development, messaging and content strategy; information design and architecture; and a full range of marketing communications services from advertising to social, and interactive to sales interactions.

Learn more, visit or e-mail .

Tuesday, February 09, 2010

Gibbs promoted to VP at Beehive

has been promoted to vice president at Beehive PR.

As vice president, Gibbs will lead the agency’s new business development and Beehive’s Livewire offering, a short-term, customized strategy development service for brands that need a strategic and creative spark.

Gibbs will continue to oversee Beehive’s consumer, retail and sports marketing client portfolio. She also will contribute her expertise to Beehive’s specialty services: crisis management, sponsorship activation and spokesperson coaching.

Gibbs has nearly 15 years of experience providing public relations counsel to a wide variety of business sectors. With strong expertise in brand building, sports marketing and consumer education, she has successfully led multi-faceted communication campaigns for top brands such as Deluxe Corp., Delaware North, The Coca-Cola Company, FedEx and Best Buy.

Visit Beehive’s Newsroom to view/download the complete release:

Jobs and more internships at Padilla

Monday, February 08, 2010

Job - CLS seeking account management professional

Job - OFFICE OF MAYOR CHRIS COLEMAN - Director of Communications

Sunday, February 07, 2010


Hot java on tap — a February gift from local agency OLSON and its client, Chinet


OLSON, is jolting the city awake Monday morning with a fun coffee stunt for client Chinet.

Nicollet Mall will be smelling great with huge prop Chinet Comfort Cups, emitting steam, coffee aroma and even heat, tempting commuters to come closer, closer, to sample actual cups of coffee, served in real Chinet Comfort Cups.

Street teams with backpacks shaped like the new cups will be sampling the coffee for consumers in the brand new take-out coffee containers.

Monday, February 8, 7 a.m. to 9:30 a.m. and again at 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m.

Nicollet Mall at 11th Street.

OLSON, Minneapolis, is the agency of record for Chinet. We’re all about turning regular old advertising on its head. And making it fun.

We were just named an “agency to watch” by national ad trade Advertising Age. So, see first hand how we’re transforming the industry, here in our hometown. For more on us, visit

Here’s the schtick: Why stop at the coffee shop when you can make your own at home, and put it in a coffee-shop style cup for your commute? Thanks to the Chinet® Comfort Cup® and Lids, you can conveniently carry your favorite hot or cold beverage with you wherever you travel. With three layers of insulation and a tight-fitting lid, it's all you need to drink on the go. For more on Chinet, visit

This campaign is part of a larger effort, which also includes radio, out-of-home, and online advertising.

Friday, February 05, 2010


The Minneapolis-St. Paul office of Weber Shandwick has selected Partners for Violence Prevention (PVP), an organization dedicated to promoting peace, reducing the incidence and impact of violence and building the capacity for violence prevention in the community, as its pro bono client for 2010.

“Weber Shandwick is honored to partner with Partners for Violence Prevention in its important task of eradicating violence,” said Sara Gavin, president of Weber Shandwick’s Minneapolis-St. Paul office. “We selected PVP as our 2010 pro bono client because of the organization’s measured approach to outreach and our belief that effective communication will help it achieve its mission.”

In the past year, PVP has directly served more than 9,000 people through a variety of programs in the areas of youth development and school support, educational training, community education and awareness, and facilitation/coordination. The organization has indirectly supported thousands of others through training of community professionals and distribution of violence prevention materials.

“We are very excited about this opportunity,” said Lisa Damon, program manager of Partners for Violence Prevention. “A partnership with Weber Shandwick will help us develop ways to effectively communicate our mission and inform the public about who we are; but most importantly to communicate why people should care about violence issues.”

In addition to working with pro bono clients, Weber Shandwick’s community outreach efforts include an annual communications workshop for non-profit agencies across the state and several day-long work projects. During the past 10 years, the agency has provided more than $1 million in services to more than 30 organizations. The Minnesota Keystone Program recently recognized Weber Shandwick’s efforts with a Star Award.

Job - PSB Full-time Interns

AdFed - What are the RELEVANT Tools in the New Media Landscape?

February luncheon event will feature Brian Hayes, who will discuss the changing nature of media metrics, how best practices are changing, and how companies can use new tools to maximize their returns.

Brian Hayes is Vice President, U.S. Central Region Sales for comScore's Media Metrix division. In this role, Brian is responsible for the Media Metrix Central Region sales and client service teams, and works with clients and prospects to understand how best to leverage the syndicated data for their needs. comScore is a global leader in measuring the digital world and the preferred source of digital marketing intelligence.

Brian has been with comScore since January 2005, and has helped to expand comScore's business among agencies, marketers, and media companies.

Prior to his time at comScore, Brian worked at the marketing firms Performics and SourceLink, both located in Chicago. During that time, he worked extensively with e-commerce and multichannel clients to help grow online sales and market share.

Brian is a graduate of Fairfield University and holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in political science. He resides in the northern suburbs of Chicago with his wife and three children.

Register online or contact the Ad Fed office at byFebruary 15 at 5 pm.
When: Wednesday, February 17, 2010

11:15 am - 1:00pm


$25 for members
$50 for nonmembers
$25 for students

Additional $10 after February 15, 2010.

International Market Square
275 Market St, Studio 185
Minneapolis, Minnesota 55405

Thursday, February 04, 2010

Thank you

Back in February of 2003, as part of my mission to learn new things and be creative, I decided that as editor of Minnesota PRSA Today newsletter, I should explore what a blog might mean for public relations. That month I launched the MNPR Blog, which was the sixth PR blog in the world.

Blogging was a foreign concept to most people then, and the truth is I didn't even have the confidence that blogging would catch on either. But 7 years later a lot has changed. Today, blogs are old news. Things like , and have taken over our attention and the attention of the media.

One thing hasn't changed though--your commitment to reading this blog. I appreciate you loyal following through the years and I do not take it for granted. The e-mails you send me telling me that you have used this blog to find a job, greatly encourage me and keep me going.

In 2009 we had an average of more than 4,000 unique visitors every month and ended the year with an all-time high of 6,450 unique visitors. Earlier this month I created a custom URL for the Minnesota Public Relations Jobs Blog – . I am working on making a few other changes to the blog over the next year to make it even better. If you have suggestions on how to improve the site I am all ears.

I have high hopes for 2010 and I look forward to working with all of you this year. Thanks.

Wednesday, February 03, 2010

Job - Marketing PR Blogging Intern

Job - Padilla Speer Beardsley - Account Executive, Agriculture, Minneapolis

“Food Play” Campaign for BK® Kids Meals Brings Engaging Animation Style to Kids

Far from traditional animation, Burger King Corp.’s new “Food Play” campaign for BK® Kids Meals, developed by Minneapolis-based advertising agency Campbell Mithun, combines realistic food and toys with two-dimensional characters and environments. Not only does the product pop visually, the campaign’s unique animation style grabs the attention of both kids and adults and stands out from other media clutter. This unique animation style was created exclusively for Burger King Corp. by Campbell Mithun and MAKE.

All of the spots in the campaign highlight BK® Kids Meals, which meet the nutritional guidelines of the Council of Better Business Bureaus’ Food & Advertising Initiative (CBBB). In “Food Play,” BK® Kids Meal menu items come to life, as kids watch BK® Fresh Apple Fries and low fat caramel sauce swing from buildings and BK BURGER SHOTS® (adding sticker decals to their fingernails just like the Spider-Man and Polly Pocket toys that come with BK® Kids Meals. The campaign gets kids equally excited about the toys and the great tasting food by sending food characters on adventures directly related to the toy property. The idea was developed from the key insight that food presents an opportunity for fun play for kids of all ages.

“We were challenged to create an effective way to reach kids that would stand out in the crowded world of kids advertising. We knew that we wanted to take a fun, relatable approach because of our key insight that associates mealtime with playtime. Advertising through animation became an obvious choice because, these days, with advanced levels of style and the quick response time animation provides, it seemed like a no-brainer,” says Ben Fruehauf, VP, creative director with Campbell Mithun.

To develop the character style, Campbell Mithun enlisted the help of MAKE, a Minneapolis-based animation company who provided a fun, differentiated and offbeat style that Burger King Corp. and Campbell Mithun were looking for. “Kids and adults alike sparked to the style, which stands out amongst the high volume of animated content kids see every day, while allowing us to express the emotion and humor kids love,” says Kjersti Hanneman, account planner with Campbell Mithun. “It seems like the campaign is going to be a big hit and we are all looking forward to continued success moving forward with BURGER KING®.

Campbell Mithun has served as Burger King Corp.’s “Kids Agency of Record” for more than nine years.

The first two BK® Kids Meal spots of the "Food Play" campaign feature Spider-Man and Polly Pocket. Spots begin airing nationally on Feb. 1, 2010. Advertisements will run on the Disney XD as well as Nickelodeon Networks and Cartoon Network.

Tuesday, February 02, 2010

Job - Roepke Public Relations - Public Relations Account Executive

Monday, February 01, 2010

Job - Roepke Public Relations Internship

Job - Weber Shandwick Internship

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