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5 Ways for PR to get Involved in ‘World Chocolate Day’

It seems like there is a world or national day for just about every day now. For example, there’s ‘National French Fry Day,’ ‘National Eggnog Day‘ and ‘National Avocado Day‘ to name just a few. Well today, July 7th is ‘World Chocolate Day.’ Today, the world comes together to celebrate one of the most delicious treats out there. PR Daily posted an article today about how PR and marketing can take part in the celebration.


“Worldwide, roughly $101 billion is spent on chocolate each year.

PR and marketing pros taking part in World Chocolate Day are hoping to increase that number—or at least grab consumers’ attention.”

Read the entire article here!

Paramount Public Relation’s Client Highlights of 2015


It’s been an exciting and busy year here at Paramount PR, our clients have been doing some fascinating things. From launching a new social deals website to celebrating the 50th anniversary of a childhood favorite, here are a few highlights from 2015:

  1. Bacon Lovers Get a Delicious Healthier Alternative: Schmacon, “Beef’s Answer to Bacon,” made its national retail debut this year and can now be found in stores across the U.S. Schmacon is an all-natural, smoked, uniquely seasoned, crispy whole muscle beef product that has less calories, fat and sodium than pork bacon. Bacon and meat lovers can replace bacon with Schmacon during breakfast, lunch or dinner.
  2. Cutting-Edge Launch: Ultimaker, a leading 3D printer manufacturer, launched two new printers at CES Las Vegas 2015. The two cutting-edge desktop printers, the Ultimaker2 Go and Ultimaker2 Extended, offer users unique features for a variety of projects. The Ultimaker2 Go is a compact, lightweight printer perfect for beginners. The Ultimaker2 Extended has the capacity to print larger designs in one print without losing the accuracy and speed of its counterparts. The new printers raised the bar for imagination within the 3D printing community.
  3. College Game Day Ready: XYIENCE, the original great tasting, zero calorie energy beverage partnered with ESPN College Game Day’s Samantha Ponder. Samantha Ponder participated in a digital press conference sponsored by XYIENCE and also starred in a variety of funny commercials.
  4. Company Launch: iConsumer, a coupons and cashback website and app, launched this year. In addition to saving customers money while online shopping, iConsumer rewards users by giving back shares of stock in iConsumer. iConsumer partners with over 1,700 stores to give shoppers access to items they shop for on a daily basis.
  5. Giving Back While Texting: GIV Mobile continues to appeal to consumers with their affordable no-contract plans starting at $20/month for unlimited talk and text. This consumer conscious no-contact service plan donates 8% of each customer’s monthly plan amount to up to three charities of the customer’s choice.
  6. Snag Deals up to 90% off from Amazon: Snagshout, a new social deals website, launched this year to provide a unique shopping experience to consumers by offering deep discounts on a wide range of retail products for purchase, use and review. The site connects shoppers looking for deals with merchants looking to gain traction with new items on Amazon.
  7. A Classic Turns 50: Since the 1960s the Lava Lamp has been a household classic and staple. This year Lava Lamp celebrated its 50th birthday by releasing two new collections. The 50th Anniversary collection adds gold with the classic lava colors, while the Beatle’s inspired line offers a funky twist to the original.
  8. Inventive Cocktails and Tasty Treats: Bungalow 23, culinary cocktail mixers, and Wagshal’s Fermín Spanish Raw Ibérico Chorizo topped the list as some of the most inventive and revolutionary products at the National Restaurant Association Show earlier this year. These prestigious Food and Beverage Innovations award–winning products are hand-crafted with full flavor in mind.
  9. Road to Financial Wellness: Phroogal, a financial education service that empowers Millennials to make better informed financial decisions, traveled across the country this June to 30 cities in 30 days to get people to actively discuss their relationship with money. Phroogal inspires people to learn and utilize resources and tools that empower communities to make better financial decision.

We can’t wait to see what 2016 has in store for us. Happy New Year! 🙂

2015: A Year in Review


The holidays are upon us and here at Paramount Public Relations we would like you wish you and your families a happy holiday and joyous New Year. As 2015 comes to a close, it comes time to reflect on the year that has now passed noting the most memorable moments. We decided to share with you 10 of the most memorable news stories from the past year.

  1. “The Dress” Phenomenon: Early in the year, a photo of a dress surfaced on social media and there was one major question: was the dress blue and black or was it white and gold? Society weighed in on the debate, making the picture one of the most shared items on social media. While it was confirmed that the dress was indeed both blue and black and white and gold, the light reflecting off the dress influenced the color.
  2. Same-Sex Marriage Legalized: On June 26, the United States Supreme Court ruled that the marriage of same-sex couples in the U.S. was legal in all 50 states and U.S. territories. In the history changing 5-4 ruling, the country joined 21 other countries to legalize same-sex marriage.
  3. Blackhawks Win Stanley Cup: For the 3rd time in the past 6 years, the Chicago Blackhawks won the Stanley Cup. Being based in Chicago, here at Paramount Public Relations we were very excited about this achievement. Defeating the Tampa Bay Lighting, the Hawks brought home the title with a 2-0 win on June 13 to win the 6 game series.
  4. Left Shark Stole the Show: The football players on the field usually draw the crowds for the Super Bowl but this year the halftime show had everyone talking. During Katy Perry’s performance, dancers dressed in shark costumes stole the show and became a viral meme sensation. The Patriots may have won, but Left Shark is who the fans remembered.
  5. I Am Cait”: In June, Caitlin Jenner told the world her story as the cover model of Vanity Fair magazine and reached 1 million Twitter followers in a record breaking 4 hours and 3 minutes. Caitlyn’s original fame happened when “Bruce” Jenner, won an Olympic gold medal for the triathlon. Now she has added another award to her list, the Arthur Ashe Award for Courage.
  6. A New Princess: On May 2, Prince William and Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge, welcomed their second child. Their daughter, Princess Charlotte of Cambridge, is fourth in line for the British throne after her grandfather Prince Charles, Father Prince William and older brother Prince George.
  7. FIFA World Cup: The women’s FIFA World Cup was held in Canada from June 6-July 5. It all came down to the final match-up, The United States vs. Canada. The game ended with a 5-2 U.S. victory. Winning for the first time in 16 years, the U.S. ended the drought and brought home the victory.
  8. Pope Francis: Making his first trip to the U.S., Pope Francis visited 3 cities: Washington D.C., New York and Philadelphia. Giving numerous masses, meeting with world leaders and speaking in front of the Senate, House of Representatives and the United Nations, the Pope spread his message on U.S. ground.
  9. #PrayForParis: On November 13, terror struck the city of Paris as gunmen and suicide bombers hit a concert hall, soccer game and restaurants simultaneously. Events of the night left 130 dead and hundreds wounded. The world was instantly saddened by this horrible event and publicly displayed their grievances and support for Paris creating the hashtag #PrayForParis, while major cities shined French colors on national monuments.
  10. Water on Mars: NASA has confirmed that they found liquid water on Mars. Using advanced digital imaging they concluded that certain slopes and seasonal dark streaks are highly correlated with the presence of water on the planet. The news has created an exciting buzz because even if the water is very salty, it could still represent the presence of life on the planet.

REI Would Rather #OptOutside On Black Friday

REI Blog Picture

The national outdoor and sporting goods retailer REI has decided to close all 143 stores on Black Friday this year in a push to encourage customers to #OptOutside and enjoy the outdoors. In recent years the trend has been for stores to open earlier and earlier on Black Friday leading some stores like RadioShack to open as early as 8 a.m. on Thanksgiving Day. This year, REI is taking a stand against the craziness that ensues when customers flock into stores for some of the lowest prices of the year.

An article by USA Today describes how REI President and CEO Jerry Stritzke came to the decision to take a step back from Black Friday:

“Any retailer that hears this will be startled by the idea,” says REI President and CEO Jerry Stritzke, who admits he was apprehensive about closing at first. “As a co-op … we define success a little differently. It’s much broader than just money. How effectively do we get people outside?”

Other stores like Costco and Nordstrom have taken a stand against opening early on Thanksgiving Day, but no other store has sat on the sideline during Black Friday until now. This is a momentous decision by Stritzke because Black Friday marks the beginning of the holiday shopping season and, as USA Today points out, Black Friday has consistently been a top 10 sales day for REI.

With its #OptOutside campaign, REI hopes to completely turn the tide of the Black Friday shopping tradition and give its employees two paid days off to enjoy the outdoors.

The Bloomington, MN REI store manager Brian Harrower has already planned an ice hockey tournament for his first Black Friday off in 25 years, USA Today reported.

“Somebody has to be the one to kind of put their flag in the sand and say enough is enough,” he says. “That’s what #OptOutside is for us, is saying we’re going to be the first, we think this doesn’t make sense anymore, it’s not healthy. And an outdoor life is a healthy life.”

Well put, Brian!

In fact, shouldn’t REI fanatics be thanking Stritzke? Because after all, by forgoing shopping altogether, shoppers will score the best savings of the year.

Happy Holidays from Paramount Public Relations, Inc.


Paramount Public Relations, Inc. would like to wish you and your families a happy holiday and a wonderful New Year. It has been a very memorable year, and we would like to share the top 10 newsworthy events of 2014:

  1. Ice Bucket Challenge: In what quickly became a viral internet sensation, countless people took on the Ice Bucket Challenge which raised over $100 million for ALS. People dumped freezing cold buckets of water on top of their heads before sharing the hilarious videos on social media – but not before nominating someone else to take on the challenge.
  2. Malaysia Airlines Flight 370 Disappears: Malaysia Airline flight 370 vanished Saturday, March 8 with 239 people on board traveling from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing. The largest search in aviation history slowly spread from the South China Sea to the Indian Ocean but as weeks stretched to months and the numerous reports of floating debris led nowhere. Baffled aviation experts have admitted the MH370’s final resting-place could take years to discover, leaving the missing passengers families to wait without answers.
  3. Polar Vortex: As we head into another winter, it is hard to forget about this January’s negative temperatures which started 2014 with some of the coldest weather across the country since the 1970’s.
  4. All About That Bass: Meghan Trainor stole hearts across America this June with her debut single “All About That Bass” which promotes health body image. The song was nominated for a People’s Choice Award, a MTV Europe Music Award and two Grammy Awards.
  5. Tight Rope Walk Across Chicago: Nik Wallenda, a seasoned daredevil tightrope walker, did the unthinkable this Fall – he walked between two Chicago skyscrapers on a tight rope. The first 454 ft long walk was at an incline and Wallenda completed his second 94 ft walk blindfolded.
  6. #BreakTheInternet: After marrying Kanye West and coming out with her own video game, Kim Kardashian managed to shock the world again this year with scandalous photos for the winter cover of Paper Magazine. The photos sparked countless internet spoofs across Facebook and other social media channels.
  7. The Death of Robin Williams: Comedy will never be the same after Robin Williams, stand-up comedian and well-known TV and film star, died at age 63 from an apparent suicide.
  8. Leaked Celebrity Photos: After a hacker stole thousands of private photos off of Apple’s iCloud of female celebrities including Jennifer Lawrence, Kate Upton and Victoria Justice, the security of iCloud storage was heavily scrutinized.
  9. Ebola: What started with just a few cases in Guinea became the deadliest outbreak of Ebola on record. The virus spread throughout West Africa claiming more than 5,000 lives and in September, the first case of the disease in the United States was diagnosed at Texas Presbyterian Hospital.
  10. The United States and Cuba Mend Relations: The United States and Cuba took the first step in mending diplomatic relations on December 17 after Cuba released two Americans who had been imprisoned for years.

Paramount Public Relation’s Client Highlights of 2014


It has been a busy year here at PPR, our clients have been doing some exciting things. From launching a new care booking site to partnering with the Marriott Hotels, here are a few highlights from 2014:

  1. Chicago Travelers Eat Well: Farmer’s Fridge, a new vending kiosk concept that dispenses gourmet salads and snacks made fresh daily with over 15 locations in the Chicagoland area, added a new location at the Chicago Marriot O’Hare hotel. Chicago Marriott O’Hare reached out to Farmer’s Fridge this year to be a part of their Travel Brilliantly campaign, offering Marriott travelers healthy on-the-go meal options made with local, fresh ingredients.
  2. Big Success in a Short Time: SuiteHop, the online marketplace for fans to book full suites as well as individual seats in suites across the country, announced the completeion of $1 million in equity funding this year. SuiteHop creates access to luxury suites with amenities to concerts and sports games around the country by allowing fans to purchase extra tickets to suites that would have otherwise gone unused. Even though SuiteHop was only launched this year, they recently announced they have over $5 million of inventory for booking luxury suites at more than 550 events nationwide.
  3. Celebrity “It” Drink at the Emmys: HYDRIVE Energy Water jetted to Los Angeles to hang out with some of their favorite TV stars for a little pre-Emmy fun this August. Emmy red carpet host Ross Mathews and actors from Emmy-nominated shows such as Veep actor Matt Walsh, Michael Gill from House of Cards, Game of Thrones actress Sibel Kekilli, RJ Mitte from Breaking Bad and more enjoyed a low-calorie and refreshing boost from HYDRIVE Energy Water before the event.
  4. Give Back to Charity While Talking on a Cell Phone: GIV Mobile continues to appeal to customers nationwide with their new all-time low $20 Unlimited talk and text plan with 150g of data. This consumer conscious no-contract service plan donates 8% of each customer’s monthly plan amount to up to three charities of the customer’s choice.
  5. A Unique Thanksgiving: This year,, a website that connects travelers and locals over home cooked meals, connected over 1,000 on Thanksgiving through their ThanksSharing initiative. Whether a person was traveling, alone for the holiday or simply wanted a different experience—ThanksSharing helped connect people over home cooked meals for the special occasion.
  6. Company, the only FREE “Open Table” of family and pet care services, launched this year.’s streamlined platform allows users to directly book interviews, single or repeated appointments and communicate with providers through real-time availability—plus online payment is available, eliminating any in-person transactions.
  7. Grand Opening Event: Our team had a blast attending Granite City’s Grand Opening Event this October in Naperville, IL. The polished casual Modern American restaurant features a wide variety of dishes prepared from made-from-scratch recipes as well as an on-site microbrewery. The new Naperville location is the 31st restaurant that celebrates gourmet food and drink in a family-friendly atmosphere.


Giving Tuesday Kicked Off the Celebration of Generosity this Holiday Season


The third annual Giving Tuesday, a movement that takes place after Black Friday and Cyber Monday, took place this past Tuesday on December 2, 2014. The day was designated to remind Americans that generosity of the holiday season should extend beyond friends and family and give back to the community. Last year, Giving Tuesday raised $19.2 million and had over 10,000 nonprofits worldwide participating in this global day dedicated to giving back.

This year, 68 countries and over 15,000 nonprofits participated in Giving Tuesday, increasing donations by nearly 63% since last year. An estimated $45.68 million was donated to charities across the globe. Part of the success of spreading the word on Giving Tuesday was due to the help of social media. Charities, families, businesses, community centers and students around the world were encouraged to share their stories of how they celebrate generosity and give back to their communities with the hashtag #GivingTuesday, inspiring others to do the same. This Giving Tuesday alone, #GivingTuesday had 698,600 hashtag mentions and 32.7 million Twitter impressions.

Beyond Giving Tuesday, there are companies who provide an easy way for consumers to give back year-round. GIV Mobile, the first no-contract consumer conscious wireless service, was proud to participate on this day and every other day of the year by donating 8% of every customer’s monthly bill amount to up to three nonprofit charities of his or her choice. Some of these charities include Scholarship America, Kids In Need Foundation, The Conservation Fund, Alzheimer’s Association and many more.

Although Giving Tuesday has past, don’t forget there is still plenty of time to help out your favorite cause this year! J

Find out more information on Giving Tuesday on their website:

Halloween: What PR Professionals Can Take Away From the Spooky Holiday


Happy Halloween from Paramount Public Relations! Kicking off the holiday season, Halloween can provide inspiration for implementing PR strategies throughout the rest of the year. As the days seem to get shorter and the workload increases due the year coming to an end, The Huffington Post gives us four great ideas to bring PR strategies “back from the dead” this Halloween. Here are our favorite two:

1. Don’t be a zombie: Mindless zombies wander around at Halloween without a clear goal where they are going. Don’t let your PR activities turn into a zombie by not having a clear goal for how you will communicate with your customers. You need a PR strategy for your business to help target your communication to the right audience and the right publications at the right time.

Also zombies aren’t the most engaging creatures. Avoid becoming a PR zombie by engaging and building relationships with the media. Journalists are more likely to read your emails and call for interviews if they know who you are and that they can rely on you for an interview. You can start to build a relationship with a journalist by understanding what they are interested in, knowing the topics they write about, being mindful of their deadlines, getting their name right and delivering on your promises.

2. Use evergreen stories: Halloween comes but once a year! Each year there are many calendar events which the media will publish stories about such as Halloween or Christmas. From a media perspective, stories around these events remain interesting and newsworthy every year.

You can use these evergreen stories to your advantage to gain publicity for your business by coming up with a fresh new angle. For example, a business media angle around New Year’s Eve could be ‘New Year business resolutions’.

The world of PR, holidays can create the perfect tie-in to promote your brand in a timely fashion. With Thanksgiving and Christmas around the corner, it is time to get into the creative holiday spirit. PPR wishes everyone a safe and fun Halloween! We hope this tips help everyone get through the holiday season J

Read the full article here:

Season’s Greetings from Paramount Public Relations

Paramount Public Relations, Inc. would like to wish you and your families a happy holiday and a wonderful new year.  We can’t deny it has been a memorable year, so here are our picks of the 10 most unforgettable media stories of 2012.

  1. Election 2012 – With headlines consisting of Big Bird, binders full of women and an empty chair, this election was all over the place! What began as a nail biter ended with Obama walking away victorious again.
  2. London Olympics – Michael Phelps made his last Olympic appearance and young women everywhere were ogling Ryan Lochte’s “swag.” The biggest take away, though, was the USA winning the most medals; out of a total of 104, 46 were gold!
  3. Facebook Goes Public – Facebook is still going strong even after its shaky start in the IPO scene. Stockholders just don’t “like” the company as much as they were hoping!
  4. Newsweek Only electronic?! This shocked everyone and is another example of how the print media is evolving. Even more shocking was their 50 Shades of Grey cover…
  5. Fifty Shades of Grey – Not since Harry Potter has a British author caused such a stir, only this time with middle aged women across the world.
  6. TomKat Divorce – The majority of the public felt that the demise of Tom Cruise and Katie Holmes was a long time coming. But with the image of Tom jumping onto Oprah’s couch burned into our brains, we can’t help but miss the good old days when these two were still in marital bliss.
  7. Marijuana Legalized in Colorado – Adults 21 and older can possess up to an ounce of marijuana and grow up to six plants privately. “Colorful Colorado” just became a lot greener.
  8. The Queen’s Diamond Jubilee – Queen Elizabeth II celebrated her 60th year on the throne as a whopping one million British subjects cheered her on in front of Buckingham Palace. And with the newest Royal on the way, who said monarchy is dead?
  9. Whitney Houston – The diva’s fight with drug addiction concluded in her devastating death. However, her legacy lives on as “I Wanna Dance With Somebody” became the bar anthem of the year.
  10. Call Me Maybe – What was thought to be a “One Hit Wonder” has become the pickup tune for girls (and guys) around the world. Now that 2012 is ending, time to find a new jingle!

Get Your Foot In The Door With The Following Tips From PRSA Blogger Richard Spector That Will Make Your Resume Shine!

Public relations is all about presentation and perfection.  Your resume serves as a writing sample, not just a reflection of your employment history.  One typo or grammatical error negates your credibility as an artist of public influence through the written word. PRSA Blogger Richard Spector offers a trove of tips to whip your resume into a perfect one-page resume that will get your foot in the door.

1. Brainstorm: Take a piece of scratch paper and make a list of accomplishments. This process may take a few days but it will prove to be useful when crafting that one-page biography.

2. Feedback: Invite a second pair of eyes to review the resume and check for grammar and formatting mistakes. Make sure to not take any feedback personally, their job is to help you draft a resume to retain the limited attention span of a very harried and overworked recruiter.

3. Brag a little: You have three sentences or four bullets to capture the attention of a recruiter. Make sure to include clear and succinct talents you posses in relation to the job you are applying for. Devote the most thought into this part of your resume — it’s that important.

4. Be Brief: Keep each thought to only one sentence. If it’s longer, it’s too long.

5. The Proof is in the Pudding: What did you accomplish? It’s not enough to say that you pitched stories to the media. Where did you land those stories?

6. Research the Possibilities: Do some groundwork on the types of jobs you’d like to apply for before meeting with your friends. What keywords are employers using? Are there certain keywords all the job descriptions have in common? Make sure you incorporate these keywords into your resume along with your action verbs.

7. Divide and Conquer: Depending on where you are in your career, you should have at least four different resumes – and that’s just the beginning. After sitting with one of my friends, we determined she had enough qualifications to tailor her resumes as an office manager, executive assistant, nutritionist, art and antiques curator and bookkeeper. Considering the diversity of public relations industries and the various skills required, having many versions allows you to highlight key information for targeted jobs.

8. Rest and Reshare: Like any good writing piece, there comes a point where you have to step away from it and have a day or two of breathing space.

9. Irrevocable Damage: What’s the best way to anger a recruiter? Apply to a job that’s not relevant. One job seeker applied to so many jobs through the same recruiter (whether relevant of not) that they crashed the system every time their name came up. As a result, the resume had to be red-flagged from being opened by the recruiter. You’re much better off applying for 100 relevant jobs than 5,000 irrelevant ones.

10. Rejuvenate: You’re going to need all the strength you can muster in your job hunt. Getting enough sleep sounds like common sense – but it’s more important than you can imagine. You’ll be grilled on your resume and asked to elaborate on each point. Be sure you can explain every skill set listed on your resume. Practice with your friends and stay alert.

Consider these tips when crafting your next resume and land your dream job!

For more information about the PRSA and to view the entire article, visit or click