November Meeting Topic:
Writing, Photography and Video: More Skills Will Get you More Gigs
On November 10, noted writer and photographer, Karim Shamsi-Basha will give us a presentation titled Writing, Photography and Video: More Skills Will Get you More Gigs. Although the title indicates freelancers will benefit, staffed communications can also increase job security and their value to their employers by going beyond being a writer.
Shamsi-Basha says: “In this post-recession economy, many magazines, advertising/PR agencies, and corporations are looking for those who can do more for less. Learning how to combine your talents is not the easiest, but can be done with these simple steps. Writing, photography, and video may differ technically, but the big picture has a lot in common.
Shamsi-Basha is an award-winning Syrian immigrant who made his mark by praising Alabama’s beauty and people through writing and photography. In addition to his books, he’s been published in National Geographic Traveler, Huffington Post, Sports Illustrated, People, Time, Southern Living, Coastal Living, Portico, The New York Time, The Birmingham News/al.com, and The Washington Post. He is the founder of Portico magazine. His book of converting from Islam to Christianity has landed the number four best seller spot in religion books on Amazon.
The meeting will be at 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. at the Homewood Library lower level. Learn more about attending and RSVP and order lunch here.
Summary of September's Meeting
Four experienced freelancers in four areas of communications gave informative tips for successful freelancing at AMP’s September 8 meeting. Billy Brown, photographer; Gigi Douban, writer for nationally distributed radio programs; Lilla Hood, graphic designer; and Jennifer Walker-Journey, writer for local and national media, participated in the session. AMP member Rick Watson was the facilitator.
Program topics highlighted some ABC’s of freelancing: Acquiring clients; Brokering satisfactory financial deals; and Client satisfaction. All four speakers offered suggestions for growing a business from start-up to successful while enjoying the freedom and flexibility of freelancing.
“I’ve learned that about ten percent of the business I get is based on creativity,” said Brown, who’s been a freelancer 35 years. “The rest is based on relationships I’ve built with clients and on always trying to find solutions for them.”
Fixin' to Write: 2016 AMP Fall Workshop
Protect yourself: Applying copyright laws
Whether you’re a potential First Lady speaking to millions of people, or a club president borrowing choice words for the organization’s newsletter, it’s a good idea to exercise caution before appropriating printed information as your own.
This was the advice of India Vincent, speaking to Alabama Media Professionals members and guests August 11 at the Homewood Library.
“Copyright protects the expression of an idea, not the idea itself,” she told her audience. Ms. Vincent handles cases involving copyright law for Birmingham’s Burr & Forman law firm.
Investigate and obtain permission from the person who owns the copyright to material you plan to use, Vincent advised. Then obtain written permission to use it. “The copyright holder may let you use it free, free with permission, or say ‘Pay me!’” she said. (summary provided by AMP Member Sandra Bearden)
India Vincent, a partner in Birmingham’s Burr & Forman law firm, will be our presenter. India's practice is devoted to helping clients identify, protect, and generate maximum value from their intellectual property and their data. As part of those efforts, India works with clients to determine appropriate strategies for protecting, licensing and enforcing their intellectual property, including trademarks, service marks, patents, trade secrets, and copyrights, and advises clients regarding contractual relationships with customers and vendors. India works with clients in all industries, including the software, technology, biotechnology, entertainment, media, and health care.
As a content creator, understanding the rights you have in your work, who owns your creation, whether you can reuse your creation, and how to enforce your rights are all important issues.
The session focused on discussion of industry norms (or lack thereof) for rights in a commissioned work, when and how you can properly incorporate parts of someone else's works in your own, and what steps you should take to ensure your work doesn't infringe the rights of someone else.
Often times we are asked, "Who are your members?"
Our last meeting we had in attendance guests and members from Southern Company, freelance writers, a former Alabama political reporter, marketing and former sports page designer, technical writers, web designers, a former corporate copywriter, a fine arts photographer, a retiree with BellSouth Public Relations, a University of Alabama student, a newspaper columnist and a former television news reporter.
We thank Ike Piggot for sharing his entertaining account of what makes "the best blog post ever".
Ike Pigott shares insight on the creative process at July's meeting for AMP
Writing is at the very center of everything we do – but too often, we get into ruts. Whether it is a stumbling block in the creative process, the proliferation of new formats and styles, or simply changes in the way media consumers take it all in – we can all use a refresh on the basics.
Ike Pigott with Alabama Power and Positive Position has sailed past many of those obstacles, choppy water and shifting winds. This month he joins us to talk about how to walk through the looking glass, and see your communications the way your audience will. When you understand User Experience, you can tighten up your thoughts and avoid the noise that can cloud your impact.
A 16-year TV news veteran, Pigott has led the movement to bring new communications to legacy organizations. He brought social media and blogs to the challenges of disaster response at the American Red Cross, and has played a key role in spearheading the Brand Journalism efforts at Alabama Power, with the industry-leading Alabama NewsCenter.
Meeting Summary: Ike shared an entertaining multi media presentation that made us think differently about the future of media.
With "pub hub" centralized layout and design for area newspapers, the future of the media profession is again changing.
"Alabama Power frequently hires freelancers for content creation that presents quality of life issues for their many customers," Ike told the group on Thursday.
He gave insight on writing for the web, sharing tips on design of the article, size issues, as well as focusing on content marketing and creating the story behind the product.
Full details will be available on our upcoming Members Page.
We hope to see you at a future meeting!
Neal Vickers entertains AMP award winners and guests
Broadcast news veteran Neal Vickers entertained and motivated the 2016 Alabama Media Professionals members and guests at the 2016 awards banquet held at The Club in April. Vickers' shared his insight of 20 years of broadcasting and photographic assignments in hot spots around the world, including Somalia, Nicaragua, Haiti, and the Iraqi border. In his civilian career, his was a familiar voice in local radio news for 15 years. Like many formerly in the news media, he has found himself in a new world of communications and is using his voice talent in new arenas.
Vickers introduced AMP Members as "some of the finest in the industry".
Read about the winners by Clicking the link. Learn more here.
New supporting business program launched
We've had requests, and now we've done it. Businesses have asked us how they can be involved with AMP as a business. The answer is our new Supporting Business program.
With some bylaws changes passed in January, we now have the structure for having businesses be involved as sponsors. This includes businesses that support our mission and businesses wanting to offer discounts to our members.
We can think of many opportunities: printers, news media companies, anyone hiring communications professionals, and many more.
Joan Perry on advertising and Bear Bryant
February's meeting was a special day with a special speaker. On February 18, AMP members and other communications professionals learned about Joan Perry's production of the "Bear Bryant Show" and it's affect on the show's advertisers.
Perry is the owner and VP of PHP Communications, and produced the show for 12 years. Attendees asked her questions about advertising and found out how she, as one of the first women in Alabama to start her own ad agency, won numerous awards. We also learned some successful branding strategies, as well as some stories of what it was like to work with Bear Bryant.
Fourteen people attended at the Homewood Library. Our March meeting is planned to be a group discussion on how to find a great communications job/client in the local area.
It’s official. The National Federation of Press Women’s 2017 Communications Conference will be held in Birmingham, Alabama!
“You and your team put a great package together, and the NFPW officers have unanimously voted to hold the 2017 NFPW conference in Alabama,” NFPW president Teri Ehresman wrote in a June 23 email to conference co-director Elaine Miller.
“Congrats to all!!!” . . . Read More
AMP president discusses freedom of the press on the radio
For the second time in 2015, Alabama Media Professionals participated in a radio discussion about media issues with BizTalk show host Roy Williams. In honor of Independence Day, when it aired on www.610wagg.com, the recorded program's topic was Freedom of the Press History and How It Applies in Today's Electronic Age.
Wade Kwon, a communications consultant and Y'all Connect director, gave his perspective on whether a blogger could accurately be termed a "reporter" or "journalist" and whether bloggers should have the same access and legal protections that reporters have.. . . . Listen to the Recording