Nicole Raisch

Peace, Love and PR

The Face-to-Face Value of LinkedIn October 19, 2010

Filed under: Career Advice,Networking — Nicole Raisch @ 8:11 pm

Dear young professionals,

I wrote a blog post for Kratz PR citing a few tips for young professionals about networking via LinkedIn. Check it out here.

Additionally, I interviewed Eve Orsburn to find out more from a professionals side about young people utilizing LinkedIn to network. Eve is the author of Social Media for the CEO and is the CEO of Social Media Delivered, a social media consulting, marketing and training firm.

She had some great gems to offer young professionals about utilizing LinkedIn to connect with influential professionals. I thought I would share them with you:

  • Nicole: What is the best way for young professionals to utilize LinkedIn?

Eve: Always start by optimizing your own LinkedIn profile, which serves as an extensive business card or resume. Start with professional headshot and make sure to explain succinctly who you are, why you are important and what you can do for someone.

  • Nicole: Do you think that meeting connections in person can be valuable?

Eve: Of course! Social media is an amazing tool that helps you build relationships. One of the best ways to take n online relationship to the next level is to met in person.

  • Nicole: What is the one thing you would suggest to young professionals on how to utilize LinkedIn for networking purposes?

Eve: Build a fantastic profile. Then use advanced people search to find the right people you need to achieve your goal. Always give more than you take – meaning you should offer help, introductions and valuable information first and ask for help second.

Thanks Eve for all your wisdom! You can learn more about Eve and her LinkedIn prowess by following her on Twitter @LinkedInQueen or by connecting with her company, Social Media Delivered, via LinkedIn.

LinkedIn and linked up,

Nicole

 

From West Coast to East Coast October 8, 2010

It’s official – I have decided to make the move to Washington D.C. and focus on building a career and a new life on the East Coast. I couldn’t be more excited!

Read on for a press release I’ve written to give more insight into my decision to move. Please note: As a public relations semi-pro, I know that an individual’s decision to move isn’t necessarily “newsworthy” but for me, my friends and my family it is – so I have decided to share the news! Enjoy!

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

October  8, 2010 (Seattle, Wash.): Nicole Raisch, five-month Seattle resident, decides to leave the West Coast and move to Washington D.C. in January to pursue a public relations career in a new city.

Raisch was prompted to move after a relocation announcement by her current roommate and boyfriend of nearly three years, Joseph Goelz. After graduating with Raisch from Gonzaga in May, Goelz was offered an engineering position with Boeing in Springfield, VA.

“At first, I was dead-set on Seattle. I wasn’t going to consider anywhere else. My friends were here and I had more connections to my industry here. The Northwest was familiar. Seattle was my plan,” says Raisch.

Within two weeks of moving from Spokane to Seattle in May, Raisch secured a part-time internship with GreenRubino, a sales associate position at The Loft and a consultant job with boutique public relations firm, Let It Shine. Three months later, after completing her internship, Raisch struggled to determine her next career move.

“I was jobless and frustrated. All signs starting pointing towards just packing up and leaving,” explains Raisch. “I was willing to explore other options: Freelancing. Retail. Moving back home.”

Friends and family pushed Raisch to make the decision to move:

“Follow your heart,” said Lucinda Kay, Raisch’s employer. “You will miss Joe too much. We all know you are going to go,” said Jordan Williams, college friend. “There’s nothing officially tying you to Seattle,” said Raisch’s mother, Charlene.

After weeks of deliberation, Raisch has decided to make the move.

“What have I got to lose? I don’t have a full-time job in Seattle and I am not tied down to the Northwest. If there is any time in my life to take a risk, follow my heart and move across the country, it’s now!” explains Raisch. “I am ready to experience a new city, a new coast. DC is thriving and bustling. Bring it on!”.

Friends and family wonder if she is moving for love or for a career. “They are both important to me right now. In Seattle, I may have one. In DC, I can have both,” says Raisch. “Plus, Joe’s not that bad of a guy. It could be fun,” she jokes.

Raisch will spend the remainder of her time in Seattle working for Publicis Consultants, a public relations firm, and living with two roommates in the city’s University District.

-END-

To learn more about my career search, check out Lauren Novo’s post featuring me as Job Seeker of the Week.

 

Top 5 Twitter Tips for The Newbie Tweep September 24, 2010

Dear Newbie Tweeps,

Yesterday I had a meeting with @kristenmaki from the boutique PR firm I work for @Letitshine about managing the company’s pro-bono account, Great Shape! Inc. Kristen wanted some tips on how to manage Great Shape! Inc.’s  Twitter account @Greatshapeinc.

I love Twitter and I credit Twitter with most of the amazing industry professionals I have met, a lot of the cool events I have recently gone to and ALL of the tweet-ups and social media panels I have attended. As such, I am sure I blabbed Kristen’s ear off about how awesome Twitter is, what she should do with Twitter and cool Twitter experiences I have had. When I got done with the conversation, I thought it would’ve been nice to have prepared a list of tips for her so I wasn’t just rambling off about the awesomeness of Twitter. And thus, this blog post about personal and business Twitter accounts:

Top 5 Twitter Tips for the Newbie Tweep:

Disclaimer: This list was written for tweeps who have a basic understanding of Twitter (i.e. what a follower is, and what a mention is). If you are a super newbie I recommend you head here first: http://support.twitter.com/groups/31-twitter-basics)

  1. Use your full name (or full business name) as your Twitter handle – This way you are easily searchable, it’s easy to remember you and keeps all of your online presence under the same name.
  2. Always reply to mentions (unless they are spam) – Twitter is about conversing and if you don’t respond to people you’re killing the engagement factor. Tweeps take mentions seriously; if someone doesn’t respond to you it’s like being in the middle of a virtual conversation and then they up and sign off (probably feigning “technical difficulties”), it’s rude.
  3. Hunt down followers – Search by school, shared interests, industries, company’s you like, people who tweet people you like, etc. Anyone you would have a conversation with or want to have a conversation with.
  4. Direct Message (DM) new followers – Send them an engaging message and leave them with a takeaway (i.e. your website, Facebook fan page, etc.). Everyone gets the “Thanks for the follow!” message. Make yours different and engaging.
  5. ENGAGE. Seek out conversations. Retweet (RT) tweets that interest you or you can offer comments on. Find events to meet up with tweets. Ask someone for a happy hour recommendation. Read people’s blogs. As with anything in life, make the most of it: GET INVOLVED.

Go out! Explore! Engage! Let me know if you have any questions or want to share some feedback on my top 5 Twitter Newbie tips.

Twitterholic,

Nicole

P.S. Great Shape! Inc. is a fabulous nonprofit based out of Ashland, OR. Great Shape! sends three humanitarian projects to Jamaica every Fall: iCare (eye care project), SuperKids (literacy project) and 1000 Smiles (dental projects). Some of the teams are already in Jamaica, follow their adventures and learn about this awesome opportunity on the Great Shape! blog http://greatshapejamaica.blogspot.com/ and on their website http://www.gsjamaica.org

 

Short Lessons From the Life of Post-Grad

Filed under: Post-Grad Life,Random,Seattle — Nicole Raisch @ 3:50 am
Tags: ,

Dear friends, family and strangers,

I’ve learned a lot about myself in the last 4 months living in an entirely new city, isolated from the college bubble, my family, and any sense of familiarity or “home”.

Test Subject: Nicole Raisch

Experiment: Moving to Seattle Post-Graduation

Discoveries:

  • It is perfectly acceptable to spend Saturday night at home watching HBO.
  • College does some serious damage on your digestive system.
  • Getting a job is almost all motivation and putting yourself out there (plus a bit of luck).
  • Public transportation can be a struggle but also an extremely entertaining place to people watch.
  • Living with someone you are dating means adjusting nearly all of your habits.
  • Meeting friends is a new city is difficult (you can’t just go into a bar and meet casual friends).
  • Other young professionals empathize with you and are more than willing to sit down with you and buy you a coffee to chat about post-graduate life.
  • The world is constantly changing and progressing but staying honest with yourself and your intentions is more important than ever
  • Change is a good thing.
  • Now is the time to take risks – Move to a new city! Try a different career path! Work retail until you find our passion! Go back to school! Do it!

Conclusion: I am ready for anything, anywhere – bring it on! I can handle it.

Revved up and loving life’s changes,

Nicole

 

Wineries, Ghosts and Harry Potter September 3, 2010

Filed under: Career Advice,PR,Public Relations — Nicole Raisch @ 10:00 am
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Did I catch your attention in the title? Among other skills, that’s exactly what I learned to do successfully during my summer internship at GreenRubino.

GreenRubino is an integrated marketing agency based in Seattle, Wash. that focuses on connecting with audiences rather than straight selling. I spent my summer as the public relations intern for GreenRubino’s public relations department.

For three months, I wrote press releases, media alerts, and biographies in addition to managing calendar listings, press coverage and media contact lists for various hospitality lifestyle clients including hotels, wineries and tourism groups. I learned how to write succinctly, search and manage press coverage for clients and create catchy titles whether it is about a winery opening or a Paranormal Conference (Yes, I wrote a release about ghosts).

But the most important lesson I learned during my internship can be applied to any internship or job: initiative will earn you more responsibility.

Throughout my time at GreenRubino, I learned to not just go above and beyond but actively search for opportunities to demonstrate that I don’t just come into the office everyday to check off tasks and eat the doughnuts in the kitchen.

The story: One of my main responsibilities was to write press releases. After writing a few dozen, I started to realize that as an intern I wasn’t going to be given the responsibility to pitch and send out the releases to the media.

One day I wrote a release for which I knew the pitch hadn’t been written yet – the opportunity! I seized it and drafted a pitch on my own and sent it to my boss. My boss was impressed and sent the release back with a few edits and as a result, I was entrusted to send out the pitch.

I didn’t need to write my own pitch. I didn’t need to ask if I could send it out. But I saw an opportunity to take initiative and I was rewarded with more responsibility: After drafting that pitch and asking to distribute it, I was entrusted with more pitches and got to participate in client meetings and brainstorms.

Therefore…

Assigned Intern Work + Initiative  = Responsibility + Recognition

As a result of exercising initiative I got to work on a creative, fun project at GreenRubino: A hotel needed creative ideas for a November package. I helped the team create a Harry Potter premiere package with themed cocktails (The Dementor and Hedwig’s White Russian), fun activities for kids which included a real-life game of Quidditch and a welcome gift complete with Bertie Bott’s Every Flavour Beans.

My boss and her boss were impressed not only by my extensive Harry Potter nerd knowledge but by my ability to create a workable, creative public relations pitch – the recognition!

In summary, actively seek out the opportunity to demonstrate initiative whether it is an exciting project or fetching coffee can prove invaluable to any internship experience and earn any intern lasting recognition.

 

A Look at TV Representations of PR August 25, 2010

Filed under: Public Relations,Social Media — Nicole Raisch @ 12:45 am
Tags: , , , ,

Dear Spin Crowd haters and lovers,

The new E! reality show, The Spin Crowd, about the celebrity PR agency Command PR in Los Angeles is the exact reason why my mother thinks that PR is about telling the media who Lindsay Lohan is dating when she isn’t in jail.

he show follows owner Jonathan Cheban, his right-hand man Simon Huck and 5 other ridiculously attractive associates. Produced by Kim Kardashian, there is no wonder The Spin Crowd is full of drama (in the first 10 minutes of the first episode Cheban requires his new associate to get lip injections) and focuses less on the agency and more on the agency’s star power.

THE SPIN CROWD. Courtesy of E!

Criticisms aside, I thought it would be valuable to look at other television depictions of public relations:

-Sex and the City (1998): The first example that popped into my head is the Sex and the City character, Samantha Jones. Both men and women recognize Sam as the sex-pot PR businesswoman on the HBO hit show. She owns her own PR business, throws parties for celebs and has every elite New Yorker’s home phone in her Rolodex. Read this post comparing a student’s opinion on Samantha’s view on PR on the real-world equivalent: http://www.culturefeast.com/public-relations-not-as-glamorous-as-samantha-jones-wants-you-to-believe/

-PoweR Girls (2005): A reality show from MTV with 6 episodes that followed Lizzie Grubman and her PR company that mirrors the atmosphere of The Apprentice. The “power girls” Millie, Rachel, Ali and Kelly deal with full guests lists, party crashers, celebrities and paparazzi among other celebrity public relations disasters. Read more here: http://www.boston.com/ae/tv/articles/2005/03/10/dan_rather_says_goodbye/

-The SPINdustry (2010): A half-hour documentary also produced by Kim Kardashian and featuring the same Command PR team as The Spin Crowd. After receiving great responses, E! decided turn the documentary and into a series. More here: http://www.mediabistro.com/prnewser/pop_culture/kim_kardashian_producing_pr_documentary_the_spindustry_151789.asp

Throughout all these examples there is one commonality: all of the shows focus specifically on celebrity PR.  I personally don’t have any experience nor have much knowledge about celeb PR so I can’t comment on the accuracy of these representations; however, there is no doubt that these representations contribute to the misguided understanding of the PR industry as a whole by our parents and friends.

While the field itself continually evolves to include different disciplines, gaining media coverage and managing public image continues to stand at the fore-front of the industry. Therefore, until celebrity media coverage becomes less entertaining than the media coverage for the rest of the industry’s technology, hospitality, lifestyle, nonprofit, etc. clients become more interesting – we’re going to have to suffer through the bad reality TV representations of the PR industry.

At least we can take comfort in knowing that maybe some viewers out there will attribute Cheban’s grotesque behavior towards his associates as a characteristic of celeb PR instead of the whole industry.

I hope the rest of the world will one day understand what PR is,

Nicole

 

A Simple Networking Tip August 24, 2010

Filed under: Career Advice — Nicole Raisch @ 4:18 am
Tags: , , ,

Dear nervous networkers,

I know how you feel – 3 months ago, I was you! It is nerve-racking to walk into a room full of strangers and just walk up to them and try pitch yourself. It’s completely different than walking up to a cute guy/girl at a college party – these are real adults who could create monumental change for your career.

After moving to Seattle, I started networking throughout the area. Since then I have attended over 15 networking events and met tons of helpful, entertaining, knowledgeable individuals. The single best piece of advice I have for recent graduates or others just starting to attending networking events is:

GET OVER YOUR FEAR.

Then you ask: how do you get over your fear? I answer: How do you try a new food you never had before? How do you get up out of bed and go to the gym early? How do you stay home and study instead of going out? How do you not eat that 2nd piece of cake?

MOTIVATION

Every person that you might meet at a networking event could give you a job. With this understanding and the motivation to get a job, you just have to ignore the awkwardness of meeting someone new and introduce yourself.

And trust me, it gets easier and easier each time you put yourself out there. Practice makes the nervous networker less nervous. Be comfortable and confident and you will make a lasting impression.

But don’t forget – even though the networking event is over the networking is not. Make sure to follow up with your contacts and try to set up another meeting with them. Follow them on Twitter, connect with them on LinkedIn (always personalize the invitation) and comment on their blog. If appropriate, offer to help them – connect them with a service, an employer, a potential employee, etc. Make sure whenever possible, to offer them something back. Networking should be mutual but the reality is when you are just starting out a career, you might not have as much to offer as a seasoned professional; try your best to utilize any opportunity to help them.

Who knows where the people you might meet at these events could lead you? They could motivate you to change your career direction, they could help you land your dream job or they could just be a new friend to greet at future networking events.

If you’re motivated, you won’t be a nervous networker anymore.

A semi-experience networker,

Nicole

 

 
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