Baby Steps!! :)

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Hey hey, it’s Ashley here with an update on my Internship with the NPACE Center. Although I am still getting my feet wet, today I helped alongside Jasmine and Eric with an interview with Christopher McCollough. The Communication department is growing so much and that is what McCollough was addressing. He talked about the progresses in which our program is making and the everyday changes that are taking place. Because of all the changes in the media world today, it is imperative that the Communication department stay up to speed in technology. I’m really excited about this internship because I feel like it will be a great opportunity to expand my knowledge in the Mass Communication field. Getting behind the scenes looks at how production life will be in the future is really important to me. I will be getting hands on training in the field, which will hopefully give me an advantage over my competitors in the future. I’m so excited for the weeks to come!!

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Amelia – Christ Community Church – Starting A New Adventure

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This semester I am interning at Christ Community Church (CCC). If you have ever wondered what communication work you can do in a church, then I am about to tell you. I cannot tell you all aspects of communication in the church because I do not know them, but I can tell you what parts I am now responsible for.

This semester I will be helping create a website for Christ Community that is for a project they are involved in called, “Micah’s Promise.” Micah’s Promise is going to be an organization that helps women who have found themselves a part of human trafficking. I am really excited about this because ultimately people are going to be helped and are going to hear about the love of Christ, and I think that is absolutely amazing.
This semester I will also be helping create a style guide for CCC to be used throughout all of their social media channels. This guide will formalize the text which is used and create a central use of language. I am using an AP Stylebook as the basis for this style guide.
I will also be researching social media platforms and recommending which platforms CCC needs to be a part to reach the largest amount of people. I will be creating a weekly posting schedule for each platform CCC decides to be a part of.

I am very excited about this semester and will be taking on each of these tasks one at a time. I have begun with the Micah’s Promise website and am currently reading up on every bit of information I can learn about WordPress because this will be where the site is located. Allow me to be the first to tell you that there is a lot of information to read about WordPress if you want to be successful and complete everything to the best of your ability.

I am excited about this adventure of interning and I cannot wait to look back at the end of the semester and see how far I’ve come.

Leaving Mississippi

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The first week for my internship was pretty busy. Being that it was the first week of classes and the fact that this is an organization that is rooted within our community. Upon our first meeting, I understood why they needed help. The Liberty Theatre is always doing something. Whether it is working with someone another organization,an event or a showing they are pretty busy.

For my first week, they started me off doing a news letter to keep everyone updated on their upcoming events, as well as, opportunities for people within the community to get get involved with the Liberty. Right now they have a partnership with our CSU Scwob for music prep classes and they are currently looking for instructors for dance classes.

They also asked me to get their shows added to news papers within a 100 miles of Columbus, as well as, local newspapers. They are are looking to expand their media contacts. Trying to raise awareness and increase diversity for their events are some of their goals they are looking to reach.

I ended my week of interning with them by attending the Cultural Alliance Committee meeting. They discussed all of their events and some new exciting things Columbus should look out for in the near future. I also attended Leaving Mississippi, which was a partnership with the Columbus Museum to showcase artwork created by Najee Dorsey. It was great experience and just this first week alone I never realized how much our community values art and creativity. The internship with the Liberty Theatre is opening my eyes to new things and I am looking forward to every experience.

 

Learning from Mistakes – Moe’s Original BBQ – Elizabeth Strickland

This past Saturday, we had our second band playing live music on the deck. I honestly didn’t know what to expect. The days are still fluctuating, one day will be really busy, and the next day is not. Saturdays however, have been extremely busy and steady. Besides announcing the event through Facebook, posting it on the marque, and telling everyone that would sit long enough, I didn’t know how else to promote the event. I was crossing my fingers and counting on our Saturday crowd to show up and support the band. The band showed up, but a crowd did not. I instantly felt responsible for the lack of attendees. I knew I hadn’t done enough promoting and marketing to get the outcome we had hoped for. From the beginning I knew the purpose of an internship was to learn and grow, but I didn’t realize their would be so much trial and error along the way.

Rolling In The Hay from Birmingham, Al!

Rolling In The Hay from Birmingham, Al!

Since realizing I could and should have done more to promote the event, I now know what I will do in the future to get such events noticed by the public. The first being, contact the local radio station, whom we have good relations with already, to promote the event which both locals and tourists will hear. Secondly, make the chamber aware of our events so they can let both tourists and locals know where the fun and good food is at! I have defiantly noticed the power of word-of-mouth throughout our community.

A lot of Moe's leave chalk out so guest can write sweet messages such as this one for all to see!

A lot of Moe’s leave chalk out so guest can write sweet messages such as this one for all to see!

Getting my bearings will come sooner than later and I know I will not make the same mistakes twice!

Moe's is known for their delicious daily side specials!

Moe’s is known for their delicious daily side specials!

 

Being Prepared – Moe’s Original BBQ – Elizabeth Strickland

We all know being prepared is the overall goal in our daily school and work life, but sometimes it’s hard to fully accomplish. This coming week, the 16th annual Thunder Beach Bike Rally is beginning and I have very high hopes for an extremely busy week. We have been told  to buckle down and prepare to be engrossed with hungry bikers. We have been working with promoters and biking magazines to make sure Moe’s Original BBQ is both seen and heard! It is my responsibly to make sure the staff is prepared, the restaurant is in check, and proper orders are in place to make the week a success, hoping to avoid mayhem. I am looking forward to this next challenge, being that it is my first opportunity to fully implement everything I have been learning over the past few months. I not only want to prove to myself I can complete such a task, but I also want to make Moe’s, the owners, and the CSU Communication internship program proud as well. I am viewing the week long rally as if it were an event Moe’s was putting on themselves.

A busy day preparing for the week ahead!

A busy day preparing for the week ahead!

I know I’ve brought up several great reviews Moe’s has received over the course of our internships, but I can’t help but to share with you all this extremely rewarding review by USA TODAY!

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http://www.usatoday.com/story/travel/destinations/2014/04/19/best-barbecue-bbq-chain/7879133/

We better prepare a lot of these award winning ribs for all our bikers next week!

We better prepare a lot of these award winning ribs for all our bikers next week!

Thankfully, we have again been named top 10 best barbecue chains in America!

Setting Us Apart – Moe’s Original BBQ – Elizabeth Strickland

Any good PR practitioner understands what sets their company apart from the rest. As easy as it has been to market and promote Moe’s Orginal BBQ Panama City Beach, I am now undergoing the process of setting us apart from the other 27 locations. Each store has their own character and flare. Each store also has their own preference, on which recipes they would like to make and sell. We’ve been able to pin point which recipes and specials we will make daily, based on feedback from the customers. My challenge this week is deciding how to promote and maximize these specials, to increase the bottom line for the business.

BBQ NACHOS! Served as one of our specials, daily! Yummy!

BBQ NACHOS! Served as one of our specials, daily! Yummy!

Another great way to increase the bottom line, is through product merchandise. I’m sure we’ve all gone to eat at a new restaurant and instinctively wanted to buy a t-shirt, souvenir kookie or cup. I want to focus on a few good products, which will raise the bottom line, while keeping the bottom line low.

My good friend, Ashton Pond. Ashton and I worked together at the Auburn, Al location, but has recently become a manager in Aurora, CO!

My good friend, Ashton Pond. Ashton and I worked together at the Auburn, Al location, but has recently become a manager in Aurora, CO!

Ultimately, I am beginning to embark the marketing side of PR, now that I’ve gotten a good grasp on what needs to be done to increase profit margins. I am looking forward to this new responsibility and all that there is to learn.

Feeling Relieved – Moe’s Original BBQ – Elizabeth Strickland

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I can’t express to all of you how relieved I am to be where we are. We are officially at the point where some of the pressure has been lifted and working doubles is a thing of the past. We have a good staff and finally feel comfortable with the day to day flow of everything. Among the most rewarding is the feedback we are getting on the food, ultimately, we are all here for the food. The smoked BBQ and soulful sides are bringing in repeats, daily. I am able to implement things I’ve learned in each of my communication classes, daily. Not only have I heard great things about the food, but the customers who I’ve had a chance to speak with said they can tell I have (almost) an education and will make a great PR practitioner. When entering this major, I was confused, not knowing if I was heading in the right direction. These moments with the customers, here at Moe’s, makes me feel like I’m exactly where I should be, which is all owed to my education and this program at CSU.

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A bit blurry, but you can tell, the line is out the door!

One of our customers, Phil Edwards, had become our biggest fan. He has said this on our Facebook page: “I’m telling you there is NOW FINALLY a great BBQ experience in Panama City Beach! Open just a short while but packed with happy, hungry customers that know good BBQ when they taste it! My wife and I went there today, again, and the food is absolutely, unbelievably fantastic! I’m just going to tell you I’ve sampled BBQ in several states over the years and, until now, I thought Memphis was the standard…. but not now… Evidently BBQ is actually a science and I’d like to tell the guys at Moe’s Original BBQ in Panama City Beach that they obviously have their PHD in the preparation of the finest BBQ in the southeast in my humble opinion!” We all know, the customers can become your biggest ambassadors, their opinion is the MOST important.