At the 38th Annual Chesapeake Conference by the Maryland Chapter of PRSA held at the John Erickson Conference Center at Charlestown in Catonsville, Md., attendees heard the latest in PR and social media from expert presenters and industry leaders.

Communicators started the day hearing from Sherry Llewellyn, director of public affairs for the Howard County Police Department. Llewellyn discussed the changing face of media; benefits and obstacles in social media; using social media in a crisis such as the Columbia Mall shooting; the value of Twitter as a primary news source in a crisis; and how to integrate social media into a traditional media strategy. (See separate post on Llewellyn.)

An inspiring luncheon session addressed the power of strategic storytelling by John Trybus, APR, deputy director of the Center for Social Impact Communication at Georgetown University, who was joined by colleague Bridget Pooley, program manager. (See separate post on Trybus.)

The conference ended with a keynote from Michelle Andres, vice president of digital media & broadcasting, and Chad Steele, vice president of public relations, both with the Baltimore Ravens, who talked about the use of social media and online marketing to engage their vast fan base. Their talk addressed traditional public relations activities and the challenges teams face with new tools such as Periscope, and real-time pitfalls to watch out for with social media.

In between, attendees had the choice of a range of topics including social media strategies, brand awareness, marketing and storytelling.

Conference co-chairs were Courtney Benhoff of Abel Communications and Kelly Stoll of AECOM. Capitol Communicator was the media sponsor. For insights and reactions from attendees, search the event hashtag, #Chessie15.

[Photo: Members of Erickson Living’s PR team at Chessie15]

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