The New Rules Book Review

I think Brian Kardon (CMO, Lattice Engines) sums it up best in Chapter 24: Make it Happen: “…you can’t outrun the ball. For a certain amount of time you can, but you’ll get to a point where someone asks a technical question or something with a little more depth, and if you haven’t done it, you’re not going to be successful.”

David Meer51-PDe-yIpL._SX331_BO1,204,203,200_.jpgman Scott expertly frames the industries biggest changes and persuades his readers that it’s the new way or the highway. Some books present information while others will just try to convince readers why they have to change, but Scott’s New Rules of Marketing & PR does both in an non-obtrusive way that leaves the reader wanting more. In an increasingly digital world, Scott shows his audience how changing with the times not only gets your company “up to snuff,” but propels it forward.


David Meerman Scott

The New Rules offers both solutions to problems and a “how-to” of sorts to get started. Similar to Lisa Buyer’s Social PR Secrets, the book provides information and tips in an easy-to-read form with applicable examples that make it easy for both the newbie and seasoned professional to understand. The tone isn’t patronizing and patient with readers and Scott painstakingly walks through each “new rule.”

Kardon said it right: “…if you haven’t done it, you’re not going to be successful.” The New Rules of Marketing & PR ensures your success by teaching, showing and engaging readers how digital they can be.

Book Review: Lisa Buyer’s “Social PR Secrets”


Third Edition

Some might say Lisa Buyer’s book, Social PR Secrets: How to Optimize, Socialize, and Publicize Your Brand’s greatest value is the quality of information, but that truly comes second to a more impressive feat: Buyer’s easy-to-read chapters chock full of important and sometimes complex information. The writing style practices what Buyer preaches in her 300 or so pages. She clearly understands and has perfected her trade – communication – and uses her writing as a vehicle for her message: becoming a PR trendmaster in your company or industry.

Nicknamed by Sarah Evans, digital correspondent and author of [Re]frame: Little Inspirations for a Larger Purpose as the “communication professional’s modern-day handbook,” Social PR Secrets’ non-threatening format allows anyone to feel comfortable reading while they are exposed to tactical and practical public relations tips. Some of the best features of the book remain:

  • Tips and tricks for success on multiple platforms
  • The shift in media relations and press releases
  • A thorough resources list

Buyer treats readers to almost double the content as her second edition of Social PR Secrets, with new information that teaches readers how to traverse new online landscapes like Linkedin, Pinterest and Facebook and tips for online writing, like inviting


Lisa Buyer: Speaker, journalist and educator on the trending topic of social media and SEO influence on PR.

guest writers to post on a blog. Social PR Secrets also makes it clear that rules for both media relations and press releases look nothing like they did 20 years ago. As if Buyer hadn’t given up all her knowledge already, she includes several glossaries in the back of the book like the “#SocialPRSecrets Twitter List” and the “Social PR Terminology Cheat Sheet.” These resources not only offer readers a chance to dive into the heart of social PR immediately but begin to cultivate thoughtful social media strategists out of all readers.

Truly, Buyer’s book Social PR Secrets is one of the best tools PR practitioners can have in their belts. It will sit on my shelf next to the AP Stylebook for years to come (or at least until the next edition is released!).

Organization Station

Since ninth grade, I’ve over-involved myself to the point of exasperation because I just love experiencing a ton of different things. I graduated high school as part of 13 clubs and in my freshman year of college, joined seven different organizations. I quickly realized what clubs and organizations would actually be worth my time and now I’m down to about four.


Actual, un-retouched footage of me when anyone needs anything

The leadership positions I’ve held in PRSSA (Public Relations Student Society of America) and AAF-NSAC (American Advertising Federation – National Student Advertising Competition) have taken up most of my time for the past two years and I had to learn how to multi-task quickly, or everything would come crashing down around me. I want to share a few ways that I employ to keep on top of my crap:

1. Make a dang list: I don’t care if it’s on a napkin, in your head or fleshed out in a complex, color-coded spreadsheet; just make one. This is continually my first piece of advice to people who feel stressed or disorganized. Personally, I just shut down if I feel too overwhelmed and don’t know where to start with all my work. Additionally, your to-do list might not be as soul-crushing as you first thought when you plan out the measures you’ll specifically take to complete a task (thank you Lucas – this advice saved my freaking life).

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2. Follow up: If you’re in a leadership position, make sure (you put it on your to-do list and) you follow up with the people you’ve delegated to. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve had to half-ass a part of a group project at the last minute because someone dropped the ball. And I’ll be honest, sometimes I was the one who dropped the ball (because it wasn’t on my to do list). As a leader, the end result reflects on you. Even though it wasn’t “technically” your responsibility to call maintenance for more chairs,  you should have double-checked that it happened.


3. Plan ahead: I’m not sure if there’s a worse feeling than coming into a class and realizing you completely spaced on that 3 page paper that’s due and there’s no way to make it up. Instead of taking a break by watching Netflix or surfing Facebook, use 15 minutes to map out the due dates and deadlines of projects. If they’re incredibly important, consider setting an alarm on your phone to remind you to have it done. This advice works in more ways than one, too! I’m currently following a strict diet, so I need to plan out my meals in advance to ensure I stick to it. Because it focuses on protein, carbs and healthy fats, I’m not able to pop into 7-11 for a cheese-stuffed soft pretzel and bottle of water to get me through the day.


4. Take time for yourself: At the end of the day, nothing is more important than you. While it might seem noble (or even impressive) to skip a meal or two because you’re just so busy, realize that’s not healthy and  plan ahead to bring food with you if you know you’re going to be on the run that day. In addition, set a time for yourself that you stop responding to emails at night. For me, it’s right after I’ve showered and gotten into bed. At that point in the night, I’m ready to relax and go to sleep. I don’t even look at my phone when it buzzes anymore.


What do you think about this list? How do you keep yourself organized and on-track to complete your goals? Let me know in the comments!

PS – sorry for the double Parks And Rec gifs, but Leslie Knope is legitimately my professional spirit animal. My personal, if you’re wondering, is a mix of Jessica Day and Phil Dunphy with a hint of Disney Princess.

Sample News Release: St. Mary’s

St. Mary’s Children’s Research Hospital

Bryan, Texas 68134


Date: 16 February 2016                                                          Contact: Katarina DeFelice

For Immediate Release                                                          Director of Public Relations

                                                                                                                 (812) 123-4567

Hope in Bloom

BRYAN, TEXAS:  Pain. Suffering. Heartbreak. Three things St. Mary’s Children’s Research Hospital hopes to avoid for its patients. Instead, the world-renowned research hospital offers hope and renewal in an atmosphere surrounded by cascading waterfalls.

Today, St. Mary’s unveiled its new memorial garden designed to relieve the stress of childhood illness on residents and visitors. The garden commemorates founders Thomas and Rose Marie Donnelli and stands adjacent to the Italian American Helping Hand (ITAHH) pavilion.

This weekend, St. Mary’s and Target Department Stores host a “Valentine-ival” to brighten spirits and wrap the patients and families of St. Mary’s in love. The Target-sponsored, Valentine-themed carnival incorporates music, games and food along with learning and celebration. Local music group The Blenders perform as children and families munch on funnel cake, create love letter mailboxes and visit the new St. Mary’s School. Target resigned St. Mary’s School to better serve patients through bigger classrooms, new furniture and interactive SMART Boards™ .

St. Mary’s officials will also announce the completion of the $1 billion, five-year expansion that helps realize the dream of Thomas Donnelli that “no child should die in the dawn of life.” The expansion doubles St. Mary’s campus, modernizes radiation therapy in an adolescent setting and renews the commitment to family-centered care.

At the center of it all, the founders’ daughter Terri Donnelli smiles through tears of joy. “My parents are smiling in heaven knowing that today their dream to help children took a major step forward. From the bottom of my heart, I want to thank all those generous people who continue to work with the foundation to help us find cures and treatments for their devastating illnesses,” Donnelli said.

St. Mary’s Children’s Research Hospital opened in 1962 with Thomas Donnelli at the helm. The hospital treats more than 5,700 patients a year, publishes 700 papers a year and remains the only pediatric cancer research center where families never receive a bill for treatment.


The Disenchanted

I hate growing up.

I guess it’s good that I have parents to push me to succeed in life. Sometimes, though, that young adult mind frame takes over and I can’t help but push them off and say, “I can do it myself!” Only, I really can’t, because they’re the ones with the money, contacts, and experience.

This is really about me getting a job. Technically, I already have two. But one is part-time and doesn’t pay very well (it’s more of a hobby for which I get paid) and the other I haven’t contacted in months. Don’t get me wrong, I feel a lot of regret for letting it go on that long, but I try to comfort myself by thinking that I did try to get in contact. Like twice. I’ve realized though, I’m going to have to pull up my big girl pants and actually care about my future.

I’m not a little girl anymore. After almost two decades of everything I wanted being handed to me on a silver platter, it might be hard to adjust to not having that anymore. I talk about how people should follow their dreams, don’t bow to “the Man”, and believe in ones self. All of these things are true, but sometimes it just isn’t necessarily possible to do. The hardest thing for me this summer will be getting out of my dream world. How can I complete my fantastical summer bucket list if I’m folding clothes eight hours a day? Honestly, I don’t even want to show my face in that place, I’m so embarrassed.

It’s very disenchanting to recognize yourself growing up. They tell you when you’re young, “Just enjoy it; don’t wish time away!” Only I did enjoy it and I didn’t wish time away. I just want more. If I could go back to my sophomore year of high school for one more year, I would probably cry from relief. College tours were just starting, friendships were really getting close, relationships were stupid, yet wonderful. Now, life is completely opposite. Life really sucks. I’ve been procrastinating the oncoming suckiness, and I still have a small hope that I can prevail, but it’s all just so daunting. What’s a small little girl from a small little town against the entire universe? I don’t want to be sucked into the dreariness of a daily corporate routine. I don’t want to work for anyone but myself. I don’t want to follow the rules of the world. I want my life to be in my own hands. That being said, I’m pretty sure the only job in the world left for me would be God, and let’s face it, He does it an infinite amount better than I would.

So where does that leave me? Writing in my room, afraid to walk out the front door, postponing the oncoming destruction of my little, innocent soul? Maybe not. Maybe I walk out that door with perspective. Through my tumult of emotions and thoughts, maybe I can see the light at the end of the tunnel, and instead of being afraid, work toward my ultimate goal while keeping what I want and who I am in mind. Life is a definite ride, and people always say that we’re all passengers. But I want to be the operator.


Stress. It gets even the best of us.

I don’t know if there is anything more stressful than being a junior in high school. I’m probably talking out my ass and there are at least ten things you could think of that are more stressful (being held at gun point, becoming the president, waiting to see if you’re the next tribute in the Hunger Games, etc…). My point is, school can put so much pressure on a student that it’s not even possible to function. That feeling of barely holding your head above water, the threat of drowning apparent for any moment. It takes courage to live life; no one can glide through easily and effortlessly. Its just not humanly possible.

You see, I’m supposed to be doing homework right now. I have a two-page paper to write, two presidential outlines, a school-related blog post, a very complicated and large algebra packet, and a health test for which I need to study. Too bad I haven’t started anything yet and it’s already 5:15. And I’m missing school on Friday (its Wednesday) to tour a college.

Yeah. I’m screwed.

Aside from school (which I think I’ve made my point in that it is the MOST STRESSFUL THING EVER), there are plenty of other things to get stressed about: a performance, a sport competition, a job, a date; literally anything. It really just depends on your personality. What stresses you out isn’t as important as how you handle that stress, though.

I find music to be the most calming, especially the classics. Also, if I make a list and am able to cross jobs out after I get them done; I have a feeling of accomplishment that fuels my energy for the next task. But really, there are thousands of ways to cope with stress. Preferably not by inflicting violence on others, though. I know it’s an awesome reliever, but you might get in trouble. And then you’ll just have more stress.