Chapter 14 Reading Notes

July 7, 2010 at 2:54 pm (PRCA 3330 Reading Notes)

          In chapter fourteen of our  Public Relations Writing & Media Techniques textbook we learn all about writing e-mail, memos, and proposals. This deals with communicating on a more personal level rather than reaching a large, impersonal audience. There are a few guidelines to remember when writing personalized letters and reports that I remeber easily by referring to them as the 5 C’s and an R:

  • Clarity
  • Completeness
  • Conciseness
  • Correctness
  • Courtesy
  • Responsibility

          Information overload is spreading through our society and this clutter can be reduced by keeping messages short, simple, and to the point. No one wants to read all the “fluff” that goes along with the message you are trying to send, so make sure to clearly state your purpose up front. Text messaging, wikis, and applications such as Twitter (which we are all familiar with after week four) to reduce e-mail bulge to organizations and individuals.

          A common misconception made by many PR professionals is that e-mail is a substitute for personal one-on-one communication. Even though e-mail is rapid and cost efficient, this couldn’t be farther from the truth. It is so important to find a balance between coming off as professional and personal but a PR writer must create a happy medium in order to be successful.

          Memos should be one page or less and the key message should be stated immediately. The textbook gives us five components of a memo:

  1. Date
  2. To
  3. From
  4. Subject
  5. Message

          Proposals are prepared to convince management to make a decision about a contract or approve money and resources for a project and they must follow a logical, well-organized format. They are often written after a client gives a Request for Proposal (RFP) which is circulated to various public relations firms.

          A position paper, sometimes known as a “white paper,” states the organization’s perspective on a specific trend or industry and they should begin with an overview so the highlights can be read immediately without taking up much time.

          Becoming familiar with this chapter will help me build skills that I intend to take with me in my professional career; I now feel more comfortable preparing e-mails and written proposals for not only class, but at work and even communicating with professors and applying for internships.


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