Video Streaming Tips

Posted May 21, 2012 by Laura LaChapelle
Categories: Uncategorized

Video streaming is an excellent way to promote your client’s event or product (or even your client themself).

What is Video Streaming?

Per Streamalot, who says it best: “Streaming Media is the action of sending encoded (digitized) audio and/or video data out across the internet as a series of small data packets that may be viewed by the end user in a real time fashion through the use of a Media Player. The data stream is accessed via a Media Player (Windows Media, WinAmp, iTunes, Real, or Quicktime).”

Essentially, streaming allows the end user, your audience, to view audio or video files live and instantaneously.

Can’t you see the benefits as a public relations professional?

How do I Video Stream?

  1. Choose the format you want to stream in: Windows Media, MP3, Quicktime, RealMedia)
  2. Choose to hardware encode (you’ll need to purchase an encoding device) or software encode (i.e. Windows Media Encoder) your media file.
  3. Choose a reputable streaming provider to host your stream.

What are some tips and tricks you have learned along the way for ensuring successful video streaming? Enter them in the comments below!

The 51st Best In Maryland Call for Nominations is open! Have questions?

Posted March 22, 2012 by Carol Blattau
Categories: Area events, Awards, Best in Maryland Awards, Lifetime Achievement Award, New Professional of the Year Award, Professional development, PRSA MD

We’ve changed the Best In Maryland program for 2012. To help with the transitions, we’ve created a list of questions that you may have and supplied the answers below. Please don’t hesitate to chime in with any additional comments or questions. Or email us at info@prsamd.org.

Why aren’t you doing the usual call for entries? And why the shift to a nomination process?

Last year, PRSA MD celebrated 50 years of our Best In Maryland awards program, an anniversary of which we are extremely proud. During the last 50 years, the awards have focused on specific programs and products that successfully addressed a communications challenge. This year’s program shifts focus from the product to individuals and teams that represent exemplary contributions to the public relations profession in Maryland.

What exactly are you looking for and what are the categories?

We’re looking for the best PR pros, teams, students, educators and partners. Categories include our two signature awards, the Lifetime Achievement and the New Professional of the Year, as well as 5 new awards including Educator of the Year, Partner of Distinction, Social Media (Individual Or Team), Improvement of the State Award (Team Or Individual), and Innovation and Technology (Team). We will also be awarding two $500 Kathleen Kelly Undergraduate Scholarships this year. Go to PRSA MD Awards for descriptions of each award.

Is there a fee to nominate someone?

There is no fee. You need only submit the application. What’s more, you can do so electronically, saving you time and money. No more hours or anxiety spent putting together a binder.  And no more shipping fees.

Can I nominate myself and/or my team?

You can self-nominate in the following categories: Partner of Distinction, Social Media (individual or team), Improvement of the State Award (team or individual, paid or pro bono), and Innovation and Technology (team only). Students apply for their own scholarships.

Do I need to submit reference letters along with the application?

Reference letters (no more than two) are optional for all the awards except the Kathleen Kelly Undergraduate Scholarship, which requires two references. Please be sure to carefully read the requirements for the scholarships.

What about the scholarship? Who is eligible and who completes the application?

The Kathleen Kelly Undergraduate Scholarship is awarded to a student with a PR focus who is in his/her sophomore or junior status at the time of the application. The student completes the applications and submits along with two letters of recommendations (one from a professor and one from an internship supervisor or other source).

What is the deadline?

The deadline for nominations is Monday, April 2. The deadline for the student scholarship is Monday, April 9.

I’m not nominated nor am I nominating anyone. Why should I attend the Best In Maryland Awards event on May 10?

The program is more than just an award ceremony. Whether you’re a seasoned PR pro or a newbie, here’s your opportunity to hobnob with savvy PR professionals throughout Maryland, and to make connections that you can’t get anywhere else. You’ll also hear from our keynote speaker Bill Toohey, communications director for the Governor’s Office of Crime Control and Prevention. Bill has been named Baltimore’s best public sector PR man – or Best “Flak” – three times: once by Baltimore magazine and twice by the Baltimore City Paper. Finally, you’ll be there to honor the best in PR including our Lifetime Achievement and New Professional of the Year winners as well as winners in 6 other new categories.

Regarding the full 2012 program schedule, what happened to the monthly events?

PRSA MD recognizes that with shrinking budgets and staff, getting to monthly events has become more difficult for our members and guests. But we also recognize that professional development and face-to-face networking are still important aspects of any professional association, so this year programming will be a combination of webinars and quarterly face-to-face events. Our first face-to-face was held on February 29, and if you attended, you already know how successful it was – we had over 35 people! Other face-to-face events include the Best In Maryland set for May 10 at 6:30 pm, a summer networking event in August, and the 2012 Annual Mid-Atlantic Chesapeake Conference set for November 8. Our first webinar is set for March 29 and will feature MGH on the new business Facebook Page. Go to www.prsamd.org for information on all upcoming webinars and events.


PRSA-MD Website RFP

Posted March 15, 2012 by Laura LaChapelle
Categories: PRSA MD

We are searching for a firm to handle our website redesign/redo! RFP submission deadline is March 29.

Click here for the constantly updated RFP with up-to-date Questions and Answers on the back end.

Contact Laura LaChapelle (laura@lachapellecommunications.com) if you have any questions.

Proposed Maryland Tax Bills Have Implications for Local PR and Ad Firms and Consultancies

Posted February 27, 2012 by Laura LaChapelle
Categories: PR

There are two proposed Maryland tax bills that, if passed, have serious implications for advertising agencies, PR firms and even independents.

Senate Bill 152. Senate Bill 152 of the Budget Reconciliation and Financing Act of 2012 calls for a six percent sales tax on digital products, which include sound recordings, video, text or software files. There’s a potential that this could also affect digital services that we traditionally provide clients. Read MD Senate Bill 152.

Maryland House Bill 1051. In addition, Maryland House Bill 1051 is calling for a six percent tax to be imposed on many businesses and services, including “A MANAGEMENT, A MANAGEMENT CONSULTING, A PUBLIC RELATIONS, OR ANY OTHER BUSINESS CONSULTING SERVICE;”.  Read Maryland House Bill 1051.

What do you think of these proposed taxes?

UPDATE Feb. 29, 2012

Many people have asked how they can help to oppose this bill. The Maryland Chamber Action Network summarizes next steps you can take: http://www.chamberactionnetwork.com/blog/view/next-weeks-hearing-on-imposing-sales-tax-on-services/. To quote them:

“1. Testify in opposition to the legislation during the March 6 hearing in the House Ways and Means Committee. The hearing will begin at 1 p.m. Anyone wishing to testify should arrive early and sign the witness register before the hearing begins. If you have written testimony, please submit 35 copies to the committee staff for distribution one hour prior to the hearing.

The Ways and Means Committee meets in Room 130 of the House Office Building, 6 Bladen St., Annapolis, MD 21401. There are twelve bills up on March 6, and the order that they are listed on the schedule is not necessarily the order in which they will be heard.

2. Let us know how this legislation would harm your business. If you oppose the bill, but can’t make it to the hearing, let us know how extending the sales tax to professional services would impact your company. Email Ron Wineholt at rwineholt@mdchamber.org.”

 

UPDATE March 5, 2012

What has PRSA-MD done to express their disagreement with these bills? Here’s a list:

  1. Messages to PRSA-MD members in our eNewsletter, beginning with the Feb. 27, 2012 issue
  2. Communications to PRSA-MD members and contacts via our social media channels (Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn)
  3. This posting on our blog
  4. An email communication to our members  on March 3, 2012 with very specific instructions/guidance on what they can do to fight the bills, including attending the March 6 Ways and Means Committee hearing and instituting a letter-writing campaign from PRSA-MD Chapter members to MD legislators expressing opposition to the bills.
  5. Issued a statement on our website
  6. Submitted a Letter to the Editor to the Baltimore Business Journal in response to this article
  7. Submitted an op-ed to the Baltimore Sun
  8. Sent a PRSA_MD WaysandMeansCmte ltr re HB1051

Take action!Attend the hearing on March 6 to oppose HB 1051 and send a letter to your legistature.

If you’d like, copy the below text into the body of your email or letter:

To my elected representatives:

I am a member of the Maryland Chapter of the Public Relations Society of America (PRSA-MD).  Our members are primarily Maryland businesses in the public relations and communications industry. I write to express strong concern regarding the sales tax on public relations firms and consultants proposed in Maryland House Bill 1051 as well as the sales tax on digital products and services proposed in the Budget Reconciliation and Financing Act of 2012, SB 152/HB 87.

Imposition of the sales tax required by HB 1051 and SB 152 on services PRSA-MD members provide would increase the cost of these services by six percent and would put those businesses collecting the “new tax” at competitive disadvantage to companies in Washington, D.C., Virginia and Delaware. Furthermore, it provides an incentive for our Maryland PRSA-MD members to move to Virginia if either HB 1051 or SB 152 is enacted.  Consequently, enacting these bills damages the vitality of the Maryland economy by targeting PRSA-MD members, a significant part of Maryland’s professional communications industry.

For the above-stated reasons, I respectfully request that any new tax on public relations firms and consultants or on digital products and services be rejected.  I appreciate the opportunity to present our concerns to your committee.

Thank you for your thoughtful consideration in this very important matter.

 

The Definition of Public Relations

Posted February 24, 2012 by Laura LaChapelle
Categories: PR, PRSA

Have you been following the discussion and controvery surrounding PRSA’s effort to redefine public relations? If so, what do you think? What are YOUR thoughts on the final three definitions (voting closes Sunday, February 26!):

  • Public relations is the management function of researching, communicating and collaborating with publics to build mutually beneficial relationships.
  • Public relations is a strategic communication process that builds mutually beneficial relationships between organizations and their publics.
  • Public relations is the strategic process of engagement between organizations and publics to achieve mutual understanding and realize goals.

Let us know what you think!

A Great 2011 for PRSA-MD

Posted December 15, 2011 by Carol Blattau
Categories: Best in Maryland Awards, Chessie, Professional development, PRSA MD

So what did PRSA-MD do in 2011?

On behalf of the PRSA-MD Board of Directors, we wish you a safe and happy holiday!

We look forward seeing you in 2012. 

Patch–A New Way to Reach Local Audiences

Posted November 1, 2011 by Nneka Jenkins
Categories: Uncategorized

PR and Communications pros, what tricks do you have up your sleeves for how to obtain the most effective local media coverage?  For those who have been looking for a solution— an efficient and expedient way to reach local journalists concerning local topics of interest — this seminar is for you!

Attendees, prepare to gleen all sorts of useful, relevant information from Rick Robinson, a Washington, D.C.-based writer who has written about hyperlocal news websites; Doug Donovan, Maryland Patch Regional Editor; Daniel Waldman, PR consultant; and Laurie Hays, Director of Public Relations for the Anne Arundel County Library System.  Moderated by Marc Apter.

Below, you’ll find Patch contacts in the MD, DC, and VA areas.  You won’t find this listing anywhere else, but we’ve got it here!

 ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Doug Donovan (Regional Editor, Maryland)

410-963-7455

AREA: Bel Air, Havre de Grace, Aberdeen, North Baltimore, Towson, Lutherville-Timonium, Cockeysville, Parkville-Overlea, Perry Hall, Essex-Middle River, Dundalk, Pikesville.  

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Amy L. Kovac-Ashley (Regional Editor, Maryland)

202-321-8160

amyk@patch.com

AREA: Greenbelt, Bethesda, Silver Spring, Kensington, Wheaton, College Park, Hyattsville, Riverdale Park & University Park, North Potomac, Potomac, Takoma Park, Chevy Chase

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Stephanie Siegel Burke (Regional Editor, Maryland)

410-207-0990, 240-246-4425

stephanieb@patch.com

AREA: Bowie, Odenton, Historic Annapolis, Crofton, Broadneck, Severn, Severna Park, Pasadena, Glen Burnie, Edgewater-Davidsonville, Upper Marlboro 

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Beth Lawton (Regional Editor, Northern Virginia)

571-235-9234

beth@patch.com

312-307-7075

AREA: Annandale, Del Ray, Burke, Huntington/Belle Haven, Kingstowne, Lorton, Mount Vernon, Rose Hill, Fort Hunt, Hybla Valley, Old Town Alexandria

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Chris Moore (Regional Editor, Northern Virginia)

571-268-5914

christopherm@patch.com

AREA:  Leesburg, Ashburn, Herndon, Reston, Chantilly, Centreville, Manassas, Manassas Park, Dale City, Fredericksburg, Woodbridge and Lake Ridge

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Doug Tallman (Regional Editor, Maryland, Virginia and DC)

301-237-3503

douglas@patch.com

Fairfax City, Ballston Patch, Georgetown, Gaithersburg, Rockville, Vienna, Oakton, Falls Church, Clarendon-Courthouse-Rosslyn, McLean, Montgomery Village, Germantown Patch

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Danna Walker (Regional Editor, Maryland)

410-905-4637

danna@patch.com

AREA: Savage-Guilford, Ellicott City, Colesville, Catonsville, Columbia, Laurel, Eldersburg, Reisterstown, Elkridge, Westminster, Owings Mills, Arbutus