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By now, everyone who is involved in UGA’ s chapter of PRSSA knows how valuable membership in the organization is. One of the many perks to being a member of the nation’ s largest PRSSA chapter is that you get to participate in many of the agency tours it hosts throughout the school year. To kick off a semester of touring, Grady faculty members Kristen Smith and Bryan Reber took a group of PRSSA students to Washington, D.C. to tour various agencies and companies, and to mix and mingle with alumni who work in our nation’ s capitol. The tour began with a visit to the headquarters of the American Red Cross, where students spent the morning learn-

ing about crisis communication from an organization’ s standpoint and how to conduct media relations, specifically when it comes to being a company spokesperson. “Getting the real-life experience of being a spokesperson at The American Red Cross was probably my favorite part of the trip,” junior Claire Taylor said, “Being in front of the camera with a ‘ reporter’ was nerve-wracking but extremely rewarding. It was also so nice of the ARC to take the time to teach us about their day-to-day work as a nonprofit organization.” After a successful morning at the Red Cross, the students and faculty members moved on to tour Finn Partners/Widmeyer Communications, followed by a tour of PR

agency Edelman. Day two of the D.C. trip also started with a bang with a tour of The Pentagon, the headquarters of the U.S. Department of Defense. The group of dawgs were given a tour of the massive building to learn about its history and day-to-day operations, and the students were even able to sit in on a public relations briefing session. After a lunch in the Pentagon food court, the group toured agencies Golin and The Glover Park Group before ending the day with a UGA Grady alumni mixer. This evening mixer was Drewry Chapter’ s secretary Brooklyn MacKenzie’ s personal favorite aspect of the trip; “The best part about the trip was seeing with my own eyes the strong community that Grady has established in D.C.,” MacKenzie said, “Talking with all of the alumni helped me to see not only how successful they are in their careers but also how connected they still are to Grady, and how willing they are to help upcoming graduates. It eased my fears of moving to a big new city by myself.” On the final day of the tour, each person was matched up with a company or agency to shadow for the day. Here, students were given the opportunity to spend a longer amount of time in one specific place to fully immerse themselves in and learn about how they conduct public relations. Overall, the trip was a great success, and who knows? Maybe you’ ll be seeing these PRSSA dawgs in D.C.



For this spring’s Atlanta Agency Tour, PRSSA members traveled to UPS headquarters, William Mills Agency and Dodge Communications. These diverse companies gave our students a chance to compare the culture and responsibilities of the public relations operations at every location. During the trip, students had the unique opportunity to see how public relations is used in both corporate communications and agencies that specifically concentrate on clients in just one industry. The group started the tour at UPS Headquarters. UPS runs a massive operation with over 434,000 employees worldwide. PRSSA students got to hear multiple presentations from their public relations and communications teams and learn about their responsibilities working for a company of that size. During the presentations, topics ranged from new initiatives at UPS to information about internship programs that UPS offers. After visiting UPS, PRSSA members traveled to William Mills Agency where they enjoyed a tour, lunch and a presentation. William Mills Agency specifically focuses on public relations and marketing for clientele in

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the financial industry. After their lunch, students headed to Dodge Communications, an agency that specifically serves the healthcare sector. One of the attendees, Morgan Shaver, pointed out that most of the group had no prior experience with a public relations company that specifically focused on either the financial or healthcare industry. Hearing from communications professionals at each agency helped her to better understand how versatile careers in public relations really are. Shaver also said that the environment was completely different at each organization they visited; she said that one of her biggest takeaways from the visit was realizing “how import-

ant the community of a workplace can be.” Drewry chapter president, Kristyn Hicks, also attended the agency tour. She said that one of the most rewarding things about trips like this one are that they allow for connections to be made that are difficult to cultivate during events like a hectic career fair. Hicks encouraged other PRSSA members to attend trips like these saying, “I highly recommend everyone take as many opportunities as possible to tour different agencies, especially ones you don’t see yourself working at. You not only get to decide what you like, but what you don’t like."



If you’re tired of hearing the word "millennial," then we have some good news for you: Generation Z is the new apple of the communicator’s eye. If you’ve grown accustomed to scrolling past your younger sibling’s posts on Instagram, you better start paying attention because the digital natives have an estimated annual purchasing power of $200 billion and demand an increasing amount of targeted messaging. Luckily for you, we’ve got you covered with some Generation Z social media basics. You’ve probably already noticed Generation Z’s preference for Instagram, Twitter and Snapchat over Facebook. But what does this mean? First of all, the new generation turns increasingly to mobile platforms. Communicators and marketers have to prepare content that is mobile-friendly in order to serve their needs. Additionally, with Instagram and Twitter, Generation Z seeks brevity. Images, short videos (R.I.P. Vine) and multimedia experiences are the master key to Generation Z’s shortened attention span. Generation Z’s love of Snapchat and its disappearing photos reveals their privacy concerns. Members of this generation have also championed apps that allow them to go incognito, like Whisper and Yik Yak, which allow users to namelessly share messages. Generation Z love apps and media that inspire free expression that might be judged or criticized by peers in school, neighborhood or other real world circles.

Digital natives are also more likely to use ad blockers online, and they are more skeptical of the advertising or marketing messages they do consume. Generation Z takes ads at face value and can easily filter them out if the messages aren’t engaging. In accordance with their app preferences, the age cohort prefers candid, honest communication and gravitates toward brands that appear authentic. They also want ads that encourage them to embrace their existing selves rather than those that pressure them to change or present unrealistic role models. In addition to Generation Z’s app usage and privacy concerns, they also have an unprecedented affinity for YouTube. The site came of age alongside the generation’s members, and they now consume the videos like older generations have traditional TV and movies. Many of the cohort’s influencers started on YouTube. Musicians like Shawn Mendes and Troye Sivan climb ranks of acclaim, and beauty gurus like Zoella Sugg and Bethany Mota have partnered with retailers, makeup brands and even published their own books. Generation Z appreciates YouTube stars to whom they can relate and videos in which they are unabashedly themselves. Generation Z’s media usage also reveals their dispositions. Videos and content like Tasty’s short cooking videos and beauty guru tutorials help Generation Z to improve their lifestyles, and apps like and Whisper allow the cohort to control and develop their own content rather than strictly consume like much traditional media. Communicators and marketers should engage digital natives with opportunities to engage and take part in large conversations and movements from the safety of their own bedrooms and with their individual flair. Key takeaways? Generation Z wants bitesized content that fits on their phone screens and encourages authenticity and creativity. What will you share with them?



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Know the Five is a student-run, independently organized initiative benefiting The Campaign to Change Direction. MORGAN SHAVER


Does the phrase "Know the Five" ring a bell? It wouldn’t be surprising, they seem to be everywhere on campus recently. Know the Five is a "student-run, independently organized initiative benefiting The Campaign to Change Direction." The overall goal of this campaign is to increase awareness of the five signs of emotional suffering and increase Athens Clarke-County’s knowledge about mental health. The Know the Five campaign was created by UGA’s Bateman Case-Study Competition Team. The Bateman Case Study Competition is the PRSSA premier national competition for public relations students. Universities from around the country select a team of students to represent their PRSSA chapter. Then, a collective client is assigned to each team. Teams begin working on their campaigns in November and continue up to the implementation in February and March. The idea of this competition is to challenge each team to "research, plan, implement, and evaluate a comprehensive public relations campaign." The Bateman Team is able to apply their experience in both classroom and professional settings to a real-world project. The Bateman Team utilized social media, planned events and campus engagement to promote their cause. On Feb. 22, they held a public seminar to introduce

the campaign and the cause. The team also planned two percentage nights at Grindhouse and Smoothie King to raise funds. Feb. 27 was Sign the Pledge Day at Tate Plaza to involve UGA students, spread the message and of course have students sign the pledge to know and recognize the five signs of emotional suffering. Lastly, the team held a Benefit concert and Nuçi’s Space in Athens on Feb. 28. The five signs of emotional suffering are personality change, agitation, withdrawal, poor self-care and hopelessness. Emotional suffering is a common problem; according to the National Alliance on Mental Illness, one in five people suffer from a mental health issue. Know the Five encourages students to recognize these signs and then reach out and offer help to a hurting friend. The campaign worked to share information about resources available, both through UGA and a national text hotline. UGA and PRSSA appreciate all the hard work the Bateman Team put into their campaign and wish them luck at the national competition!


Dominating Facebook and Twitter feeds alike, dialogue about the current political situation has been inescapable. However, political discussion has not just taken over conversations on the Internet, but the amount of pressure and tension in the United States has forced different companies and corporations to weigh in. The way these companies have responded to claims leveraged at them has been met with varying success, but in a time high tensions and clear divides, it is important for those involved in the world of branding and public relations to understand how their particular corporation fits or does not fit into the discourse that is United States politics.

Perhaps one of the most viral instances of political discourse sneaking into public relations in the past few months was when the company Uber was thrust into the spotlight. The hashtag #DeleteUber caught fire when the company was accused of trying to profit during the anti-Trump taxi strike in New York City. The true power of negative public relations manifested when 200,000 Uber users deleted their accounts in protest to the company not responding soon or comprehensively. Amid other controversies, those in charge of damage control at Uber are more likely than not working long hours to figure out how to reverse the harm caused to their image.

Figuring out exactly how to deal with a politically charged situation surrounding one’s brand can be a particularly slippery slope. Opponents of Trump have boycotted Nordstrom for carrying the fashion line of his daughter, Ivanka; however, when the department store decided to stop selling the line, Trump supporters then launched their own attack. Entering the front lines of the Twitter wars and negative press that can come from making the smallest of moves is frightening in the current climate. President of Logos Consulting Group, Helio Garcia offers some resonating advice to those feeling that their brand must enter the political discussion publicly; he asks a each company to ask themselves, “Does the issue that your brand is considering making a statement on affect its “lived and declared values?” The answer to this question very well may lead to the rise or fall of one’s particular company or brand, thus making it so that having a political strategy can no longer be considered trivial or frivolous.




The member of the month for March is Marcella Genut. She is a third year student majoring in public relations, minoring in communication studies, and is also working on a disability studies certificate. Interviewer: What is your favorite part of PRSSA? Marcella Genut: This is super cheesy, but my favorite part of PRSSA are the people! All the members and executive board are super friendly and care about your success. Everyone is in the same boat, and we all give each other tips, insight and encouragement. We're also all Type-A personalities so it's nice to have people who understand my need of organization. I: What made you want to get into PR? MG: What made me want to go into PR was my passion for nonprofit. I've been very grateful that I've had several childhood experiences being the spokesperson for multiple nonprofits. This experience led me to PR because I realized I love interacting with others and promoting a cause. I also loved writing and when you combine it all, you get PR!

Executive Board 2017 PRESIDENT Kristyn Hicks VICE PRESIDENT Emily Johnson CREATIVE CONSULTANTS DIRECTOR Erin Shattles PR DIRECTOR Maggie McNerney

I: What is your dream job? MG: My dream job is to work for a nonprofit like Children's Healthcare of Atlanta. My big overall dream is to start my own nonprofit for families of a low-income single parent household.

TREASURER Chloe Branch

I: Favorite thing about Grady? MG: The professors! The professors truly care about your success and are very understanding. They make class fun and exciting. The Grady professors are happy to lend a hand or letter of recommendation!

SECRETARY Brooklyn MacKenzie

I: Have you had any cool internships?

MG: Right now, I'm interning for Extra Special People. They are a nonprofit in Watkinsville that supports people with developmental disabilities. I got to participate in Bulldawgs and Buddies and go onto the Sanford Stadium field! It was amazing to capture the excitement on ESP's participants faces, meet Kirby Smart and see the football players interact with the kids. With Bulldawgs and Buddies, I posted pictures and video to ESP's social media outlets. I: What are a few fun facts about yourself? MG: I'm a first generation American and

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Beyoncé’s influence surpasses the realms of music, dance and beauty; now, she is a pregnancy goddess. This single-lady-no-more debuted her pregnancy via a 90s-esque photo shoot, and the world went twice as wild. The reaction might lead some to believe that people forgot that having twins was not a miraculous feat, but businesses and organizations nonetheless took advantage of this most recent development to bring additional attention to their social media platforms. Witty captions add zest to Instagram and Facebook posts, but it can multiply the effect of Tweets. Clever posts about Beyoncé and her pregnancy are even better; so the twin-tweets began. The Minnesota Twins were quick to jump on Beyoncé’s announcement, tweeting, “Hey @ Beyonce, we heard the good news… Where should we send these?” with a picture of Bey, Jay, Blue Ivy and two Twins jerseys attached. Will this

Tweet increase the Twins’ chances of making the play-offs? Probably not, but the fact that they took advantage of this newsworthy event is something all public relations professionals should take note of. In addition, popular HGTV show Property Brothers’ Jonathan Scott tweeted, “Congrats @Beyonce, I’ve heard twins are amazing. Jonathan & Drew are nice names. Let us know if you need a nursery.” Popeye’s Chicken tweeted, “She has TWO buns in the oven? We’ve got a lifetime membership to Popeye’s for both of them! #twins #pregnant #babybumb.” Other tweets weren’t quite as fun or tasteful, including that of the Atlanta Police Department. They tweeted, “#Beyonce may have everyone wanting to celebrate her pregnancy, but remember no celebratory gunfire! Stay safe, Atlanta.” Finally, Denny’s tweeted, “wow, bey has TWO buns in the oven! That’s just an expression by the way. Please

don’t eat those buns. They are babies.” Both tweets earned criticism from followers, mostly for their corniness. Twitter was jam-packed with congratulations, pregnancy jokes, and organizations capitalizing on Beyoncé’s announcement to somehow tie in their products or services. This goes hand-inhand with our digital age; it is the responsibility of organizations to take advantage of opportunities such as this one to attract attention and promote their brands. Each of the examples above earned media coverage, proving that such things really do work! Next time you’re in charge of an organization’s social media page, remember to keep an eye out for applicable current events. Beyoncé’s pregnancy announcements aren’t numerous, but this lesson can apply to other newsbreaks. Keep your eyes, ears and Twitter feeds open.



Creative Consultants offers Grady students a great opportunity to work on public relations accounts outside of the classroom. Each team is assigned to a local Athens business and is tasked with coming up with a campaign based on their client’s specific needs. Whether that be raising awareness or increasing sales, the Creative Consultants students have planned great campaigns for their clients. Social media was one of the common threads amongst most teams in order to help their clients promote their businesses. Teams working for the Ark, Emory School of Nursing and UGA CTRU have been working towards creating social media calendars, which include content for all of their client’s platforms. In addition, the Porter Novelli, Pixel and Ink and PCAA teams have all used social media in order to promote the businesses they are working with. The Pixel and Ink team is using social media in order to create Instagram giveaways to increase sales for their services amongst sororities. Porter Novelli is focusing on increasing content engagement for Junior Achievement of Georgia, while PCAA is promoting events with social media.

Other than the focus on social media, teams are planning promotional and fundraising events for their clients. The Eaton team is creating graphic material to be displayed on items such as postcards, t-shirts and other giveaways for a drag race event in April that Eaton Corporation will be attending. PCAA is helping their client plan a "BBQ and Bluegrass" event to be held in the fall in order to promote PCAA. For fundraising, the Ark team is planning a percentage night called the "Community Chew," which will include the participation of local Athens restaurants. These are just a few examples of all of the amazing work the Creative Consultants teams have done so far. All of the teams with Creative Consultants have been working hard towards fulfilling their campaign goals, and each team is creating excellent campaigns for their clients. With the end of the semester approaching, the teams are focusing on completing their campaigns and presenting the final results to their clients.


APRIL 27th Reading Day

APRIL 13th

APRIL 28th-MAY 4th Finals

APRIL 26th Member Appreciation in the PAF from 12-2pm

MAY 5th UGA Commencement

Final PRSSA Meeting of the Year Senior Banquet from 6-8PM in PAF


APRIL 27th Grady Convocation



PRecedent March 2017  
PRecedent March 2017