From the Archives: In Pursuit; The Beginning
This was originally posted on my (now defunct) academic blog as part of my culminating capstone.
The purpose of our Capstone is to force us to look at the knowledge we've gained over the 18 months of our time with Communications@Syracuse and apply it to our own strengths and perspectives. We are looking at the world as it is and proposing an innovative business model that connects what we feel is missing and uses our degree to its fullest. My proposal was a life coaching model focusing around educating both young adults and older generations on how to tailor their digital presence to best reflect themselves personally. I was rather proud of the written proposal and accompanying blog posts.
This is the first one, the second will be posted later this week.
While I decided to not move forward developing "In Pursuit" after graduation, it was the model for my latest venture. I'm working on a new proposal and innovation. I plan to launch Labor Day Weekend, stay tuned to find out more!
Let’s start at the very beginning, or at least where In Pursuit began with me.
My interest in Public Relations came out of a bad situation where our press agent dropped the show I was producing just before the opening of a 3-month run and took a sizable chunk of our budget with her, leaving little to show for it. In a desperate act, I took to Google for PR and marketing and did everything and anything I could to think of to sell our show. This included every platform I was on as well as every platform the show was on, blog posts, bribing strangers for likes and shares, cold emails, cold tweets, even charming my way into several student unions to leave flyers and coupons everywhere I could.
I called it “Guerilla Marketing”. It worked. Or at least helped.
But I was completely exhausted. I was drained, burnt out, and even had carpal tunnel from all the hours on my phone.
Even months later I was stuck with the thought of how consuming promoting a single show had been, how much time was wasted just on social media. This same thought ran through my head about 8 times a day, there must be a better way!
This is how I wound up in a masters program for digital communication with a specialization in PR. I wanted to find that better way. And I did.
I began to fall in love with PR Theory and research. Big Data is hella scary but also hella cool to dive into, we are absolutely fascinating in our online habits! Oh! And Hootsuite, don’t even get me started on Hootsuite. I have a love affair going with that platform.
Suddenly at my fingertips, I had easy access to all the information I had needed two years ago to not have completely burnt out trying to be noticed by everyone and anyone.
Did you know that you can track what audience segments prefer which platforms? Turns out I had wasted all that time on blogs and LinkedIn. I should have been tailoring and timing my Twitter and Instagram feed instead.
Looking back now, it all seems so simple and obvious. But it’s not, especially with the algorithms constantly changing and Facebook using keywords to bury posts in feeds to eventually force the page to pay for it to be seen. Guess what? It works.
Creating a professional digital presence is hard. Updating and maintaining it is even harder. But in our day and age, it is so vital to have these things in place. The internet is crucial to getting a job, getting our work seen, getting our names and faces out there. We have to do it. We have to know how to do it well. And most of us don’t. And most of us can’t afford to go off and get a degree in it.
I was lucky. That’s exactly what I did. And I want to share that knowledge. I want to help you tell your own story and do it right.
Sure, it’s really easy to pay someone a lump of cash to redo your LinkedIn (Spoiler alert: My father did this two years ago. It was over $500 for the one update) or you can have someone do the research, help you focus your time and energy, and make it easy for you to manage it all yourself. Give you the basic data, teach you some tricks, help build your presence and confidence using these platforms efficiently, and save you both time and money.
It’s a rough draft, it’s a new business model. But I want to be here to help, to keep others out of the rabbit hole I fell into those years ago.
We are all in pursuit of something. We all want our stories, our profiles, our careers to mean something. We want them seen, seen by the right people.
In the pursuit of your own story, I can’t get you there. But I can give you the road map.