Why Rocky V is Actually Better than Rocky IV - A Lesson in Persuasive Writing

Why Rocky V is Actually Better than Rocky IV - A Lesson in Persuasive Writing

Is Matt really going to let me get away with this? If someone doesn’t stop me, I WILL devote the next several hundred words to debating the merits of the 4th and 5th installments of the ‘Rocky’ franchise on the company blog… I mean it…

I’m still typing… I guess this is actually happening.

Guess what, Internet? I LIKE ‘Rocky V’. And you want to know what else? I actually think it’s better than ‘Rocky IV’.

It's a PR blog, so let's talk about oatmeal

The list of things I’m ‘best at’ when measured against my Resch Strategies coworkers is embarrassingly short and peppered with distinctions no one would proudly claim. Running through the categories in my head, here’s what I’ve come up with:

PR-related skills and talents?

(Crickets chirping)

Moving right along.

Non-work related skills, talents and attributes?

Umm…

Oh! I am far away the most snarky member of the team. That’s one thing. And there’s also a big #1 next to my name when it comes to impatience. That’s TWO things!

That’s it. That’s essentially the list. Number one in snark and impatience. Cool.

There is one more area I shine though. It’s not much, but given its company on this list, I think it’s safe to say it’s the only designation I can proudly proclaim.

I, Joseph Robert Becsey, am the best at breakfast.

And it’s not even close.

My weapon of choice: oatmeal.

And in the spirit of New Year’s, I’m going to contribute to the half-hearted effort to improve collective habits by letting you all in on my proprietary recipe. Now everyone can start the day off right!

I’m probably going to alarm a few of you right off the bat, so let’s just get this out of the way now. My oatmeal is cold. I eat it just like a regular bowl of cereal. Why? Because it’s easier, faster, and tastier. Moving on.

Step 1: The oatmeal

I go with steel-cut oats. 1/3 of a cup. This is the only thing I measure.

I don’t like mush and these little groats maintain just enough texture after soaking in some liquid for a few minutes. Added benefit: they’re less processed than the oats of the rolled/instant variety. Health!

Step 2: The fixin’s

The key to good oatmeal is recognizing that oatmeal isn’t good at all. There’s nothing to like about it. So to make it palatable you need to disguise it with a bunch of better tasting stuff. Oatmeal is really just the glue that holds the rest of it together. Here’s what I add to mine:

  • Slivered almonds. Sometimes I’ll go with pecans or walnuts but almonds are definitely the default choice. They provide a nice crunch and they’re chock-full of vitamins, mineral and healthy fats.
  • Chia Seeds. The perfect addition. They’re high in protein and rich in omega-3 fatty acids, antioxidants and a whole long list of other good things. The best part: you barely notice them.
  • Pumpkin Seeds.  Just like the stuff listed above, these things are packed with good stuff. It’s the nuts and seeds that keep me full, so I don’t skimp on any of these.
  • Goji Berries. Essentially just a fancy raisin that costs 10 times more than the original. So why do I use them? I’m a sucker for the “superfood” moniker goji berries carry.  Raisins are a perfectly acceptable substitute for the proletariat though.
  • Cacao nibs. Chocolate’s cranky dad. I’m not going to sugarcoat it (PUN!), cacao nibs just aren’t as tasty as the chocolate they often become.  Chocolate is delicious. There’s no denying it. Still, there’s no place for that stuff it in Joe’s oatmeal, so I stick with the cacao nibs - the source of all the amazing health benefits of chocolate with none of the yeah, buts.
  • Fried apples. This one is optional. To change things up every now and then, I’ll slice up an apple and quickly fry it in some olive oil before dumping it into the bowl.

There’s basically no measuring with any of these add-ons. Just dump, scoop, pour as you see you fit.

Step 3: The liquid

This stuff would take 6 hours to chew if you skipped on soaking it in something first. I go with some nut-based milk like almond or cashew. I use just enough to get everything wet and easy to stir.

Step 4: The spices

For some added punch, I liberally sprinkle this mess with some cinnamon and cardamom.

Step 5: The wait

This stuff is best when you can make it the night before and pull it right out of the fridge the next morning. But I’m lazy, so that almost never happens. Soaking it for 10 minutes is plenty sufficient though. I usually throw it together and then move on to making coffee or tea. Once that’s done, it’s ready to go.  

And there it is. Joe’s oatmeal. Guaranteed to leave you full of vim and vigor (and also oatmeal). Give it a try. 

-Joe

Working from home vs. the office. The final verdict may surprise you.

Before joining Resch Strategies, I had a pretty cushy gig. My “office” was a few short steps from my bedroom, and my boss, co-workers, and clients were all hundreds of miles away. I worked from home – the holy grail of workplace environments.

*Not my actual home office. But remarkably similar. Photo By: William Raveis Real Estate

*Not my actual home office. But remarkably similar.

Photo By: William Raveis Real Estate

I’ve been with Resch Strategies for the better part of a year now and most of that time has been spent in our office. With months of punching the clock now in the books, I feel adequately seasoned to weigh in on the office vs. home office debate. Here we go:

Work Attire:

I like wearing a shirt and tie. It’s nice getting dressed in the morning with purpose. When I’m nicely put together, I honestly feel like I’ve accomplished something before I’ve even walked out the door. I’m wearing a tie. I’m important. I matter. And this will surely be evident to anyone that sees me passing by on the street, which is also important. My importance MUST be conveyed to all.

I also like pajamas.

Advantage: Push

Commute:

It’s tough to argue with the 5 second shuffle from my bed to the spare bedroom next door but I’m going to do just that. I live a mere mile away from the global headquarters of Resch Strategies, which makes for a very pleasant, easy bike ride about 6 months out of the year. Riding my bike to and from work is a great way to start and end my day when weather permits. I really do enjoy it.

But that all goes out the window once the temperature plummets and the sun is out for roughly 45 minutes a day. In the cold, dark heart of winter, the ability to make it to my desk without ever leaving the confines of my blanket cocoon is a luxury I simply can’t disparage.

Advantage: Push

Work Environment:

I love this office. And that’s saying something. Those who know me even a little bit know that I’m a total curmudgeon. Seriously. I should probably work on it. But I won’t because somehow it actually works for me here!

Strangely enough, the little rain cloud I carry around with me seems to be a nice complement to the sunny disposition of my more chipper officemates. We have a lot of fun and it truly is a great place to work.

It’s also really nice to be able to bounce ideas off the brilliant minds around me in real-time. Creativity is a commodity in this line of work and it’s hard to stay fresh without occasional fresh eyes and insight from my Resch compatriots. Successful brainstorming is much more difficult when it must be done through email.

There is a flip side to all of this though. I’m the worst writer in the office. And it takes me forever to write anything. A big part of the problem is that it’s very difficult for me to move on from a sentence that isn’t quite perfect. Compounding the problem is the fact that I struggle against a debilitating case of keyboard paralysis.

For whatever reason, I’m a much better writer the second I step away from my computer and stop actually writing. The elusive phrasing I seek can often only be found while mumbling to myself several feet from my desk. Once it hits me, I race back to my desk and furiously jot it down before it disappears (it’s a short window) and then start the whole process all over again. Needless to say, this weird exercise is definitely more comfortably executed in the the privacy of my own home.

Advantage: Push

Final verdict: Push

All told, there are pluses and minuses both ways on this one. At the end of the day, having the flexibility to work from home from time to time is what works best for me, and luckily that’s one of the many perks of working here at Resch Strategies.

Are You Texting your Audience? If Not, Maybe You Should Be.

One of my favorite things about working in the world of public relations and campaigning is the exposure to a seemingly constant stream of cool new technology and gadgets.

The communications toolkit has dramatically expanded in the past decade or so. Not that long ago, advertising broadcast over the television and radio was about as “high-tech” as messaging got. Advertising would be blasted out over the airwaves, and those that had dug into their pocketbooks had to have a certain degree of blind faith in the idea that a worthwhile chunk of their target audience would be reached.

We live in a very different world today.

The marriage of technology and data analysis has produced a dizzying number of new, highly-targeted messaging options. Today it’s possible to identify specific individuals, craft messaging designed exclusively for their consumption, and then continuously reach them with that message through a myriad of channels in a way that’s measurable and definitive.

With that being said, I’m sure you won’t be surprised to learn that these tools are tremendously powerful, and Resch Strategies would be more than happy to help your business or campaign leverage the latest and greatest in messaging technology.

Let’s focus on just one option for now.  

If you’re reading this it’s safe to assume you own a cell phone, which means you have likely received at least one unsolicited mass text message. You want to know why? Because they work.

Using a short message service (SMS) marketing tool is a great way to successfully reach a target audience. Everyone reaches for their phone when it buzzes. It’s just a fact.   

Messages sent through an SMS marketing tool usually come from an unfamiliar number and they’ll read something like this: “URGENT! Monkey fever is devastating the world’s primate population! Text HAPPYMONKEY to 55555 to make a $10 donation to the Global Monkey Federation”

And while some people may use SMS messaging to help the monkeys, we recently used it to help a client connect with their membership over a crucial legislative issue. In this instance, developments on the legislative front were changing on a daily basis and our client needed a quick and effective way to communicate these updates to a specific set of individuals who were prepared to actively engage on the issue. In this case, it was absolutely the best way to reach a sizable target audience with critical, time-sensitive information.

Our favorite SMS marketing tool is EZtexting. It has an intuitive interface, it’s easy to upload and arrange your contacts and their base package is free.

In our experience, SMS messaging is a highly effective and cost-efficient way to communicate when you have an identified and receptive audience in place. If you think it’s something you should be using, you’re probably right. And if you want to discuss it further, please give us a call. We’d be happy to walk you through the ins and outs of SMS marketing and help implement a texting campaign that suits the needs of your organization.