Thursday, February 7, 2008

The Beat Goes On

You don't have to be a PR pro to have great publicity ideas.

When Syracuse University's campus station, Z89, changed its format recently, student program manager Romina Llona knew she had to do something different to get call attention to the news. She created a two-day build-up linked to its new slogan, "The Beat of Syracuse." On Day 1, the station played Michael Jackson’s “Beat It” all day. Day 2 brought the never-ending thump of a heartbeat.

People noticed -- maybe a little too much. One listener called 911, fearing the station had been taken over by some kind of evil-doer. The media noticed too -- the local ABC affiliate and the city's daily newspaper gave the story some exposure.

Llona's not a PR major at the school, but I hope she adds this little adventure to her resume. Her creativity and willingness to take a few risks will impress the right employer.


Anonymous said...

I believe your right. I support that idea. I mean, well, in my opinion, there are some people who are just so good at publicity frolics even if they are not professionals, while others can be trained, and yet, they just simply lack the talent..

Sandra Beckwith said...

Exactly. You can be good at the execution part of things, but the PR types who really stand out also bring great ideas to the assignment. And they don't even have to be "new" ideas -- they can be twists on concepts that worked well elsewhere.

Anonymous said...

Fewer and fewer people are willing to take risks these days. This Beat It story is so refreshing. Although such ideas don't always work, there's nothing to be gained from just sitting around and relying on what other people have done in the past. I think that trying out new things is a positive attitude to have.