Picture a bunch of normally serious research types, who spend 51 weeks a year crunching numbers and contemplating correlations, turned loose around a pool in Miami in March. Do we get down and party? You betcha. But we also think some pretty big thoughts, and have some pretty lively discussions.See this article for coverage of last year's 12th annual IPRRC, including links to hundreds of photos.
Just to give you a flavor, here -- excerpted from the conference's schedule -- are a few of the 100-plus presentations I’m really looking forward to hearing:
A Q-Sort Study of Ethics among Public Relations Managers
Shannon Bowen and Dennis F. Kinsey, Syracuse University
Based on the Q-Sort analysis, we will discuss the factors that public relations practitioners consider most often when they resolve and consider ethical dilemmas. We are particularly interested in the measures that test concepts such as “greater good” or “public interest” against those such as, “just advocate and let legal worry about the ethics.”
Alienating a Key Corporate Stakeholder via Public Communication by a Corporate Executive: A Case Study of Whole Foods Market and the Healthcare Debate
John Wirtz and Austin Sims, Texas Tech University
Using the editorial written by John Mackey, CEO of Whole Foods Market, and the reaction that followed case study, the paper considers several questions about corporate communication in the public sphere. One example is, how should corporate executives balance their fiduciary responsibility to employees and stockholders, while maintaining an ethical communication position characterized by openness and honesty?
Blogs vs. Online Newspapers: Analyzing Different Emotions and Perceptions of Crisis Responsibility Displayed Online in the Samsung Oil Spill
Bokyung Kim and Joonghwa Lee, University of Missouri
Little research has been conducted about “affected stakeholders.” This study seeks to fill this gap by focusing on the influence of stakeholders’ perceptions of a crisis on either journalists’ framing of news reports or an organization’s CRS and by comparing stakeholders’ and journalists’ anger, alertness, negative word-of-mouth, and perceptions of crisis responsibility exhibited online.
Branding a Nation on Youtube: The Ethical Implications of a Promotional Choice
Chiara Valentini and Irene Pollach, University of Aarhus (Denmark)
In this paper, we study the ethical implications of stealth marketing via social media for the purpose of nation branding, using the case of VisitDenmark. Our data comprises both online and print news articles published by the four major Danish newspapers as well as by international news media in September and October 2009.
17 Building a “Subgame Perfect Contingency Theory”: Using Game Theory to Identify Expected Utilities and Equilibrium Strategies in Conflicts
Jeffrey J. Pe-Aguirre and Glen T. Cameron, University of Missouri-Columbia
Following the principles of Occam’s Razor, this study uses game-theoretic models to whittle down the huge number of contingency theory variables, and provides a parsimonious explanation for why some conflicts are resolved through durable compromise agreements, while other conflicts are simply irreconcilable.
Conceptualizing ‘Message Integrity’ for Public Relations Evaluation: A Case Study of Non-profit Organizations
Craig E. Carroll, Nell C.L. Huang, and Brooke Weberling, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
Building upon the literature in framing, attribute agenda setting, agenda building, and mathematical theory of communication, the authors introduce and define the concept of ‘message integrity’ as a way to evaluate the processes of attribute salience transfer.
CSR 2.0 and Social Capital: An Analysis of Fortune 500 Companies’ Use of Social Media for CSR Communication Applying Social Capital Theory
Jee Young Chung, University of Alabama, Seungho Cho, Mississippi State University, Hyun-jin An, University of Alabama, and Taeho Kim, University of Alabama
The present study aims to examine how Fortune 500 companies use social media for CSR communication on companies’ Web sites applying social capital theory. A content analysis of Fortune 500 companies will show the current status of CSR communication, and the result will guide how public relations practitioners effectively and ethically communicate CSR with various stakeholders.
Cultural Divides in the Middle East: Communal and Exchange Relationships Between Military Public Affairs Officers and Arab Journalists
Matt Allen, U.S. Navy, and David M. Dozier, San Diego State University
This study analyzes data collected from military public affairs officers (PAOs) and Arab journalists in the Middle East in the spring 2009. Media relations for PAOs will be enhanced by de-emphasizing an exchange approach to their relationships with Arab journalists while placing greater emphasis on communal relationships.
Exploring the Impact of Social Media on Public Relations Practice
Donald K. Wright, Boston University, and Michelle D. Hinson, Institute of Public Relations (University of Florida)
This is our fifth annual survey trend analysis examining how social media are impacting public relations practice. Through our studies between 2005 and 2009 we found that public relations practitioners considered the impact of social media to have increased each year. Additionally those who told us social media and traditional mainstream media complement each other also had risen.
Facebook and the Fortune 500: Is Corporate America Embracing Social Media as a Relationship Management Tool?
Sean B. Robertson, San Diego State University
Public relations practitioners and publications have touted social networking sites as a tool for building organizational relationships. This study will build on earlier research efforts by examining Facebook, the leading social networking site with more than 300 million active users, and how Fortune 500 companies have adopted social networking as a relationship management tool.
22 Face-Off: How Public Relations and Journalism Have Exchanged Roles in the Modern Democracy
Robert S. Pritchard, University of Oklahoma, Terri L. Johnson, Eastern Illinois University, and Bey-Ling Sha, San Diego State University
This paper posits that the maturation of public relations and the deterioration of the news industry has resulted in public relations becoming the new Fourth Estate, that public relations has assumed the responsibility for opposing mainstream media and has perhaps even supplanted the media as the fourth pillar of democracy.
Finding Publics within the Blogosphere: The Blogger Public Segmentation Model
Nohil Park, University of Missouri, JiYeon Jeong, University of Missouri, and Jung Ho Han, Yonsei University (South Korea)
This study aims to suggest a new model for segmentation of blogger publics and identification of active bloggers swarm, addressing the limitations of Grunig’s situational theory in the blogosphere. Specifically, this study attempts to test the situational theory’s accountability using the method of Structural Equation Model, and constructs a new model for segmentation of blogger publics.
How Top Business Communicators Measure the Return on Investment (ROI) of Corporate Communication Efforts
Juan Meng, University of Dayton, and Bruce K. Berger, University of Alabama
This paper addressed the findings from two research projects related to how top business communicators measure the ROI of their organization’s corporate communication efforts. The first part reported the results of an international survey of 265 experienced business communicators worldwide. The second, qualitative study used in-depth interviews with 16 diverse and experienced business communicators.
ICTs and Public Relations: A Study of Corporate and Non-profit Web Sites Five Years Apart
Krishnamurty Sriramesh, Massey University (New Zealand), and Milagros Rivera-Sanchez, National University of Singapore
Only a few studies have explored the extent to which organizations are using a variety of social media in relation to their websites. This study compares the changes in the websites over two points in time, presents the changes in the use of web sites, and compares the web sites of for-profit corporations and non-profit organizations.
Measuring Social Media Credibility: Validation of Measurement and Examining Its Impact on Public Engagement and Supportive Behaviors
Minjeong Kang, Syracuse University
The purpose of this research is two-fold. First, this study aims to develop measurement of social media credibility from the perspective of new audiences and, second, to examine the influence of social media credibility on public engagement and supportive behaviors. To this end, multiple methodologies, both qualitative and quantitative, will be employed.
Mommy Bloggers and the FTC: Reactions to the Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials
Kelli S. Burns, University of South Florida
This study will content analyze the blogs of Nielsen’s Power Mom 50 to understand how mommy bloggers reacted to the FTC guidelines. The study result determined whether they posted a reaction to the FTC guidelines, whether they proclaimed support for or criticized these new policies, their understanding of the new guidelines, and the practices they use to indicate endorsement.
Social Media Engagement: How Organizations Use Twitter to Build Relationships
Daradirek G. Ekachai and Amanda Stageman, Marquette University
This study attempts to examine how selected Fortune 100 companies use Twitter to engage with their publics in order to build and/or maintain relationships with them. Using content analysis methodology, this study examines these corporations’ “tweets” to determine the extent to which they engaged with their “followers” to build trust, satisfaction and commitment.
The Corporate Image on Wikipedia in a Turbulent Economy
Marcia W. DiStaso, Pennsylvania State University, and Marcus Messner, Virginia Commonwealth University
This study is based on the premise that Wikipedia goes beyond providing simple reference material to the formation of public opinion by providing extensive, timely information. By comparing the ten Fortune 500 company Wikipedia entries in 2010 to the entries from 2008 and 2006 the authors identify how the formation of public opinion has changed over the years.
The Kindle Crisis: Exploring Ways to Evaluate Online Crisis Communication
Timothy W. Coombs and Sherry J. Holladay, Eastern Illinois University
The Kindle Crisis presents a unique opportunity to study stakeholder responses to crisis communication. This study examined the online responses to Amazon CEO Bezo’s apology for insights into this case and for developing a method for systematically evaluating online responses to crisis response strategies.
The Senior Communicator of the Future – Competencies and Training Needs
Tom Watson and Chindu Sreedharan, Bournemouth University (United Kingdom)
The research to be reported in this paper analyzes the responses of leading European and international senior-level communicators as to the knowledge, skills, relationships, 360-degree vision, and managerial abilities that senior communications professionals will need in five years’ time, and what it takes to prepare the next generation of leaders in globally integrated organizations.
Theoretical Perspectives in Social Media: Excellence versus Simple Information Provision
Sean Williams, Communication AMMO, Inc, and Julie O’Neil, Texas Christian University
This paper will explore current literature on social media use in public relations generally, and apply Excellence and other theories to attempt to explain social media’s potential impact on business communications through a content analysis. This is envisioned as a foundation for other research, informing the creation of a qualitative assessment to be conducted and eventually, a quantitative survey
Tina McCorkindale, Appalachian State University
Most public relations research about Twitter is based on case studies—a quantitative 31
content analysis has not been conducted. Therefore, the purpose of this paper is to conduct a content analysis to determine how the “40 Best Twitter Brands” are using Twitter, and what makes these the “best” brands
AND I hope someone is interesting in hearing what WE have to say as well. Here’s what I’ll be presenting
Doing Measurement Right: On the Road to R.O.I.
Mark Phillips, USO, and Katie D. Paine, KDPaine & Partners
This case study will cover and include discussion of how the second year of USO’s comprehensive measurement program including a second year of survey/relationships data as well as a robust set of social media data. This study will show how this data has been used successfully to shape the USO entertainment, volunteer and media relations programs going forward.
Old Rules Don’t Apply and Standard Measures Fail—Defining New Ways to Measure Investor Relations
Katie D. Paine, KDPaine & Partners
To determine if any of the elements of activities provided by a corporate IR department, an analytical methodology was designed. The methodology broke down each report into three discrete elements: Analyst metadata, report metadata, and concept metadata. Individual company messages were also tracked for their prominence and further categorized as to their integrity.